Tag: hats

Playing Mad Hatter with Ellen Christine


Last week I went to visit Ellen Christine’s gorgeous showroom downtown in the 100 degree New York summer heat wave and played mad hatter with a few of her newest hats! I had so much fun with the hats that I had to take a few home with me! Ellen Christine has been a milliner for decades, first getting her start in costume design. She’s done work throughout the industry, most recently with Phillip Lim, Joe Fresh and Jill Stuart. Hats may be something that your grandmother wore, but they can definitely be a great way to spice up any outfit! And not to mention, look like a proper lady. Kate Middleton seems to wear them all the time and it definitely works for her. 


Ellen and I had a great conversation, here’s a bit of what we talked about.

How did you get started? 

I always did costume if not theatrical, then rock and roll, and then at one point was on the road with the producer and they decided they wanted a gladiator hat…so I had to make it. And that’s what started the non-sensical hat making. I started making hats for friends and designers in the early 1980s and it’s always been vintage-historic leaning towards the crazy people from other eras.

What specific eras inspire you?

Post World War I and Edwardian era. When women were first starting to be free.

On artwork inspiring her...

Old world drooping ostrich feathers, I love Duchamp and the Impressionists. (Artwork) gives me pause. Calder movement, light and shape on canvas, and the different feelings that it gives. I’m the mind of a child of the 1960s and it’s all about flow.

What’s your favorite hat you’ve ever made?

I don’t think it’s ever happened yet it’s like a bad boyfriend that keeps cheating on you…it’s an ongoing process of being in love.

I just love Ellen’s whimsical hats, they push the envelope and can really add something to your outfit. As I said, I left with two hats and one purple one (in the last photo below) from her exclusive Spring 2014 Collection. I can’t wait to wear them. If you love her couture hats, good news. Ellen Christine is giving blog readers a discount! Just call the showroom (212-242-2457), make an appointment or talk by phone and get a hat at a 10% discount!

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Hats/Hat Box by Ellen Christine (call showroom at 212-242-2457 and mention the blog for a 10% discount on exclusives) 

Vintage White Blouse 

Alice and Olivia Lavender Leather Skirt 

Vintage Christian Louboutin Magenta Booties 



Malinda Knowles

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Summer is in the Air: Waves, Water and that Perfect Maxi Dress for a Hamptons Weekend

Malinda Knowles at beach in Florida
I was looking at some old Instagram photos of an amazing time I had on the beach last Memorial Day Weekend and decided to share a few. I just can’t wait for the weather to fully warm up in New York City and for a few Hamptons weekends. As an original native of Florida, I live for the beach (only the good ones though) and I adore cute summer sandals, hats, bikinis, maxi dresses and jumpers. As I finalize my summer plans and get out of these final exams at FIT, I am absolutely looking forward to summer this year! Instagram by Malinda Knowles, Jupiter Beach Florida

Here’s an old painting of a beach wave that I did some time ago but I’m challenging myself to do better than that and get a bit more depth and contour in the wave and ocean water. As I said before, all of my artwork should be up on the blog before the summer is over.

Acrylic Wave Painting by Malinda Knowles

Anyway, I love a good maxi dress for the summer and spotted some new ones recently that seem great for that Florida or Hamptons summer vacation weekend. Check out a few below from Tibi, Roberto Cavalli, and Diane von Furstenberg. See even more summer wear here.


Sincerely Yours,


Malinda Knowles