We caught up with Kim Fletcher for a quick chat before she left for China to promote the Melbourne Cup. Kim is one of Australia’s most well-loved milliners and it’s easy to see why.
“My designs tend to be very strong and visible, and ‘subtle’ is not a word usually associated with my work. For that reason my hats usually appeal to strong women who are comfortable in their own skins and like to be seen.”
It’s not just her hats, either — Kim has a genuine love for the sport and a great attitude to go with it. “I have been lucky enough to be supported by people in the racing industry, and I think that comes from the fact I actually love horse racing. You will see me at racetracks all year round not just over the more popular carnival periods. I also believe millinery should be fun — after all, I’m not curing cancer. I’m just making a hat and hopefully that is making my clients smile. I don’t take myself or what I do too seriously.”
If you’ve never had the pleasure of getting a bespoke headpiece from Kim before, here’s a look into what the process is like. Hint: You get to play dress-up! “When making an order for a client, the process is very collaborative. At the end of the day I can make a hat to suit a client by looking at face shape, build and colouring, but you also need to consider a clients personality and what makes them happy.”
“We have quite a few hats in my shop and so playing dress-up is often an important part of the process, as most women don’t know what suits them. So by trying a variety of pieces on they can define what they do and don’t prefer.”
Kim also gave us a few hints on what to look for during the Spring Racing Carnival. “This season I have decided to make a few large brimmed hats. Metallic hardware on headwear will also be popular especially rose gold.”
Read the rest of our interview with Kim Fletcher here, and treat yourself to our complete guide to Spring Racing Carnival 2016 — you’ll find fashion inspiration, guides to horse racing, and more interviews with the most important people in the horse racing industry.