When Tracy Rose first wore her own hat design to Royal Ascot, the photographers couldn’t get enough snaps. Now 30 years on she is still creating quirky designs and the photographers are still snapping.

To celebrate all these years in the millinery industry, Tracy decided to showcase a large selection of her original hats at the Gallery Different in London for two days so the public could get a closer look.

Pictured right: Tracy herself at the exhibition



1982 – Gold Ra Ra hat

This gold lame hat was the first creation Tracy wore at Royal Ascot.



1987 – Zip hat

Bronze lame and zips.


1995 – Butterfly hat

Pink satin crown with dark pink chiffon and crystals. Tracy explains that the split brim (just to the right) is one of her signature designs. Other signature designs are swirls and waves.

1996 – Heart hat

Black chiffon with white pearls

1998 – Tiger hat

Tiger print chiffon with gold thread. Gold lame and black fringing.

2001 – Picasso hat

Turquoise chiffon, silk face with brown chiffon hair. Inspired by Picasso. The brown represents hair. If the hat is turned upside down the crown becomes the neck with a bow.


2002 – Fan hat

Lilac lace, pink and lilac Marabou feathers. Dyed silk glove with acrylic nails. On close inspection you can see the acrylic nails clearly with their nail polish. Tracy's nails are the same length and on the day she painted them in the same colour and design.

2003 – Candy Delight

Pink and yellow Marabou feathers with black lace up. 

2003 – Oriental Lily

Pink crystals, organza silk lily, silver lame swirls and silver chains. Tracy created this in tribute to her grandmother Lily, who had just passed away. Lily was also a milliner and Tracy still uses her wooden block from 1923.

2004 – Art Deco hat

Yellow and pink silk with beaded fringing. The skull cap has more fringing at the back.

2006 – Rose Cloud

White silk with blue & black chiffon roses.

2006 – Spanish hat

Black lace, black and white crepe, pink and red satin.

2008 – Zig Zag hat

Lilac, pink, orange and blue satin.

2010 – England World Cup
White silk, red satin with Swarovski crystals. The hat represents the England flag waving in the breeze with goalposts at each end. The black veil represents the goal net and on the net are eleven tiny Swarovski footballs representing the eleven England players. 
2010 – Chocolate Box hat
Definitely one of my favourites! Purple satin, lilac chiffon and brown silk chocolates – yummeeee!

2011 – Windmill hat

Black, pink, yellow and white satin. It became known as the windmill hat only after a few people observed that it looked as though it was moving.

2011 – Staircase hat

Pink silk, gold lame and blue velvet. There is a door with 300 on it at the top of the crown (not shown) in celebration of Royal Ascot 300-year-old birthday this year. 

2011 – Wimbledon hat

This is one of Tracy's latest and of course she wore it to Wimbledon. White satin, veiling and crystals. It is to celebrate Lavazza being the official coffee at Wimbledon. The crown represents a coffee cup, the brim a tennis racquet, the veiling the tennis strings and brown Swarovski crystals are scattered around like coffee beans. The petals at the front are satin replicas of Lavazza coffee capsules and in the centre is a velvet tennis ball.

Tracy is definitely not hanging up her hat yet; she still has plenty of ideas for new creations – maybe something for the Olympics or the Queen’s Jubilee? We’ll just have to watch this space.




Karen Grace studied Personal Styling at the London College of Fashion and is a registered affiliate member of the Federation of Image Professionals International. You can read more of Karen's fashion advice at:

For personal shopping and styling services you can reach her via frumpy to funky on [email protected] and 07787 800 390. 

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