How on earth does interior designer, painter and fascinator creator Rebecca Blow of BekyBoo Hat Designs find time to do everything?
1. How did you get into making hats and fascinators?
I’m an interior designer, but I’ve always loved dressing up and collecting hats. So I did a couple of hat-making courses at Chelsea and Kensington College and then started making them for myself and friends. Then I set up a stall on Etsy, and now I’m on Makerhood.
2. So you have an artistic and design background?
I have a degree in fine art, and an MA in interior and special design – I work full time as an interior designer. But I also paint – I suppose you’d call it abstract expressionist style. I should push my hats more, but I like painting as well – I’ve been at two painting exhibitions in the last two weeks!
3. What kind of hats do you enjoy making most?
I make hats and fascinators that I enjoy wearing myself. I get a lot of ideas from fancy dress parties – for example, masks with feathers, or a James Bond theme. The stuff I do feeds well into the current trend for vintage fashion, and I can also design custom-made hats. I enjoy working with different materials, like felt, straw, and silk flowers, though my favourite is sinamay, a natural straw-like fibre. I have three moulds at home, including one for a top hat!
4. Do you source your materials locally?
I use a lot of beads and recycled materials. There’s a charming shop in Clapham that I buy old jewellery from, and Brixton market stalls are great for fabrics. Of course, I also get a lot of offcuts in my job. I love recycling unusual items, like some antique metal roses I found – things that you know that you won’t see anyone else wearing!
5. What do you hope to get out of joining Makerhood?
I get a lot of interest from the US in my Etsy stall, but I like the idea of selling locally, especially from a market stall in Brixton. When Brixton Village was just starting up last year there was a shop that stocked my hats but they didn’t really sell any.
6. How long have you lived in Brixton?
I’ve only lived here for four months, but I was in Clapham for 3-4 years before that.
7. So what’s your Brixton recommendation for people who don’t know the area?
I love Brixton market. It’s a nice mix of young nerdy cafes and old Brixton flavour, with the meat stalls and fish stalls – a really good balance. I’d definitely recommend Okan, a place in Brixton Village that serves okonmiyaki, a kind of Japanese pancake or omelette.
Enjoy Rebecca’s beautiful hats and headpieces at http://brixton.makerhood.com/bekyboo-hat-designs