At Home with Homebodii: Joanne Edwards
Joanne Edwards is the inspiring millinery designer behind Joanne Edwards Millinery. Her beautiful handmade hats and bespoke design service has captured the hearts of many women due to their feminine and elegant design. Before creating her own millinery business, Joanne worked in the fashion industry for ten years for companies such as French Connection and the designers at Debenhams brands. Her desire to create her own range of accessories eventually led to her forming Joanne Edwards Millinery after previously designing womenswear and occasion dresses. Joanne has since worked with some of the leading industry names including milliner Noel Stewart, and couture milliner Edwina Ibbotson. Joanne Edwards Millinery creates headwear for every occasion or outfit including brides, wedding guests, and spring race day events and carnivals.
To celebrate this spring racing season we had a chat with the busy lady behind these lovely handcrafted designs to talk about her business, experience, inspiration, and being at home.
Name: Joanne Edwards
Location of Residence: South West London
Tell us a bit about Joanne Edwards Millinery, and how it started.
I worked in the Fashion Industry for over a decade, designing formal wear and occasion dresses in London. I loved the fast paced environment however I began to feel something was missing. Having grown up in rural Ireland, I had always been fascinated by traditional crafts and I knew I wanted to work with my hands in some way. I tried out various short courses, one of which was a Millinery Design course. Millinery gave me everything I had been looking for and hand-making hats became a natural transition from dressing the body to dressing the head. I made the move shortly after this, completing my studies, working for various well known milliners in London and eventually setting up Joanne Edwards Millinery.
What inspires you when creating new accessories?
I adore working with colour so I usually pull together colour palettes then build shape, texture and ideas for trimmings. I look for inspiration in travel, a new country I've visited, the beautiful Irish countryside or architecture in London. I handmade all of my flowers and love to spend time visiting Kew Gardens or one of London's beautiful parks for new ideas. A visit to the Chelsea Flower Show each year is also a must.
How has your experience in the fashion industry influenced your designs and business?
The extremely fast paced fashion industry in London helped prepare me for managing my time and being adaptable to anything that comes my way! It also helped me understand commerciality in design and the importance of relationship building.
What is your favourite thing about being at Home?
I love the freedom to choose my own working hours and the flexibility to work early in the morning or late in the evening. I am more focused and can put more energy into my product and business working from home.
What homebodii item piece suits your personality?
I adore the Amalia Flutter Robe because of it's beautiful print, striking colours and flattering shape. I like to keep things simple yet elegant and Amalia is a style in keeping with my core design values - feminine hats which flatter and enhance the wearer, so all women feel fabulous in them!
To see more of Joanne's work be sure to check out her website http://www.joanneedwardsmillinery.com/ for more beautiful handcrafted millinery.