The Studio

Our design values, by Sarah Lomax and Rachel Skinner

For us, design is about more than looks. Good design does not just look good, it feels good too. The craftsmanship, the fitting, and even the sourcing of materials, all have to be right to ensure our clients receive a finished hat that is worthy of our name.

 Headpiece by Lomax & Skinner. Modelled by Haisa. Image by Katie Van Dyck

Inspired design

Our inspiration comes from all over, and the starting point for a design can be anything from a sketch from nature, a cloud spotted from our studio window, or the personality of a client.

We love to mix vintage and contemporary elements in our designs as millinery has a rich history, but each piece we create is an original. We believe millinery is a living art form, not a heritage craft.

Bespoke millinery design is all about creating something beautiful that is suited to the personal style of the wearer. So, our ultimate goal is to create a hat or headpiece that our client will receive lots of compliments on, and thoroughly enjoy wearing.

Traditional craftsmanship

We trained under the late Frederick Fox, for many years milliner to the Queen. The techniques we use and the quality of our craftsmanship are firmly in the tradition of English couture millinery.

Each element is created by hand, using hat blocks, hand shaping, and hand sewing. Every hat we produce is fitted specifically to the wearer, and fully lined for comfort.

Pink cocktail hat by Lomax & Skinner. Image by Kaie Vandyck

Quality materials

All of our materials are of the highest possible quality to ensure our designs stay fresh. Where fabrics are woven, they are of a good, heavy weave that will not pile easily. Where they are dyed, either pre-dyed or hand dyed by us, they are done using the best quality dyes, so the colours will not easily fade.

Wherever possible, we source materials locally. For example our pheasant feathers are sourced from Thorney Moss Game Farm, just outside Lewes.  The responsible sourcing of feathers is important to us, so we only buy feathers from reputable suppliers.

Pink headpiece by Lomax & Skinner. Image by Katie Van Dyck

Frederick Fox

Sarah and I were very saddened to hear of the death of Frederick Fox. We met whilst serving apprenticeships for him in his New Bond Street workroom and feel we couldn’t have had a better training. The apprenticeship lasted for three years and we spent our first weeks just picking up pins and tidying threads and observing the experienced milliners. It felt like forever before we were allowed to work on a hat! Sarah very clearly remembers how exciting it was to actually make a fabric button that was going to be sewn on a hat as a trimming. Even more exciting that it was going to be on a hat for the Queen.
Frederick Fox had had a Royal Appointment for many years. We were privileged to have had the opportunity of making hats for The Queen, Princess Diana, Duchess of York and other members of The Royal Family whilst working there.
We recently came across this lovely obituary by Stephen Jones.—milliner-obituary