I met Hermione Harbutt nearly three years ago in front of a roaring log fire at a hotel in Somerset. Fast forward three years and it was her I trusted to make a beautiful headdress for my wedding. Her mixture of enthusiasm and talent has brides queuing up to wear her exquisite designs and resulted in her being voted ‘Best Wedding Accessories’ in the UK by The Wedding Industry Awards this year. If you really want to look and feel a million dollars on your wedding day this is the lady to go to.
What’s the process when a bride decides to choose a Hermione Harbutt headdress and what is the experience you give them?
We really pride ourselves on providing an exceptional level of customer service to all our brides. Brides can visit the beautiful Hermione Harbutt showroom in Bristol, where they can try on lots of gorgeous headdress and jewellery designs. If a bride is unable to visit Bristol she can have a Skype appointment or we can liaise by emails and telephone conversations to help guide her to finding that special piece. Once some favourite designs and details have been pinpointed, we discuss making bespoke changes. Each piece is handmade individually for each bride so it is part of our service to offer changes to the shape, size or material content of the piece to perfectly suit her gown, hair and personal style. It is a really creative process with brides being very personally involved along the way.
How did you get started?
About five years ago I was making jewellery with pearls (my favourite medium) for friends and people started to commission me to create things for their weddings. A capsule collection of five headdresses followed and I became increasingly passionate about them; there is so much you can do with headdresses and I was liberated creatively – I love making unusual shapes.
Any advice you would give to brides to be?
Try to choose pieces for your wedding that are beautiful and unique, but within your comfort zone and true to your style. You still want to feel like ‘you’ on the big day so do not be tempted to wear your hair all down if you usually wear it up for example. Try to relax and enjoy the experience of planning, it is such a special time. The professionals working with you should take care of everything and allow the planning to be a real pleasure.
What do you find that brides worry about that they shouldn’t?
Brides worry about choosing a piece that is a perfect match to the gown, the venue or the hairstyle. Whilst all of these factors should be taken into careful consideration of course, there really are no rules, and if a bride absolutely loves something then that is the piece she should choose!
Which high street stores do you think make beautiful accessories?
Mango, LK Bennett, Whistles and Reiss.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Firstly from current fashion trends and the catwalk; the wedding industry has it’s own fashion and in the UK, wedding dress designers launch their new collections of dresses each May. I’m also heavily influenced by the past. The word ‘vintage’ is now rather overused and describes a very broad style of fashion, but by gone eras that have influenced the future are a wonderful source of inspiration. Nature, organic forms and flowers play a role too. My May blossom headdress was inspired by cherry blossom. Sometimes I’m not even sure where the patterns in my work come from!
Whats the coolest thing that your success has enabled you to do?
Being able to go over to America to launch a Red Carpet Collection in LA, and do a photo shoot and collection film on a roof top in San Francisco. I was also invited to exhibit with Stephanie Allin in Paris alongside some of the best British bridal designers. With success comes more opportunities and growing concepts! Oh, and I made Suzanne Neville’s headdress for her own wedding day which was a very proud moment.
Visit Hermione here >