One of the lovely parts of choosing your outfit for the big day is looking for the headpiece to accompany it all. So much to choose from: long or short veil; high on the head or nearer the nape of the neck; jewelled or fabric; modern or vintage; clip, comb or veil… I could go on.
I wanted to show you one vendor on Etsy whose work I’ve fallen in love with recently because she does a very wide range of hair adornments for brides, and they’re all a little bit beautiful. It’s Jill Prettyman of Be Something New‘s range of styles and colour palettes that means she has something for everyone. I am particularly taken with the blue and pink palettes of some of her feather pieces. The shades are so flattering: sort of shabby, dusky, vintage hues of pink and blue.
Jill has had over 25 years’ experience of designing and making bridal veils and headpieces, and Be Something New is a new line she and her daughter do together. There really is a good range for every bride because some of the pieces are one of a kind, made from vintage supplies, and some are made to order.
I love knowing the person behind the lovely designs, and all about how they start and run their business, so I asked my questions again! Here they are!
WOW: What made you get into designing wedding accessories?
Jill: I started designing wedding accessories years ago when I was working for a bridal shop and our best selling headpiece was discontinued. I told the owner that I could make it, and that’s how it all started. I worked for that store for a few more years, then started my own company. I sold to bridal stores all over the country before I started selling online, through Etsy, and also on my own website www.besomethingnew.com.
WOW: I love how you started! Thank goodness they discontinued that veil! What inspires your designs?
Jill: I’ve always been in love with vintage jewellery and laces, and I get a lot of inspiration for my designs from the piles of vintage goodies I’ve collected over the years.
WOW: I have a pile of vintage finds, but sadly not the talent to do anything with them, booo. Mine constitute just a little box of treasures! A home museum! So, what would your own accessories look like if you were to have your wedding day all over again?
Jill: I’ve been married to the most amazing man for over 30 years, but if I were to marry him all over again, I would definitely create a tiara made from gold vintage jewellery and beads. I wore a French hat covered in lace with a big puff in the back for my wedding day – it was the ’80s ha ha! I cannot wait to someday design something special for my daughter on her wedding day.
WOW: Nowt wrong with the ’80s! I love the ’80s! Your daughter will be one stylish bride wearing one of her mum’s creations. Aw! What words or inspirational phrases do you live by?
Jill: Since I was little, I’ve always needed to be creative, so I think my favourite quote is from Coco Chanel
When I can no longer create anything, I’ll be done for…
WOW: Can’t go wrong with a Coco Chanel quote. Sticking with inspiration, what do you read or look at to inspire you?
Jill: I don’t have a lot of free time lately to read, but the one magazine I always make time for is Sunset Magazine. It’s all about the Western states of the United States, and it covers topics like vacations, camping, gardening, beautiful and unusual homes, and cooking.
WOW: I love those sorts of magazines: a bit like a little escape into daydreaming. Do you design other things apart from bridal wear?
Jill: I design a lot of everyday hair accessories. I also love making jewellery, but that I mostly just do for myself.
WOW: What’s your tip for choosing accessories to accompany a dress?
Jill: I think it’s important to feel beautiful, but also like yourself. Your headpiece is like the icing on the cake, and it can really make or break your look. It should complement your dress, but also your face and attitude. If you’re outgoing, go ahead and be a little daring, but if you’re more reserved, make sure you pick something that just makes you feel beautiful and at ease.
WOW: That’s really good advice, actually. Some brides feel under pressure to be something so far away from what they are in everyday life just to make the most of one of the most important days of their life that they end up unrecognisable and uncomfortable. So much better to just stay true to who you are: you’ll always glow that way. Thank you so much, Jill, for sharing all that with us, and for letting me showcase your work. I love your headpieces so much, and I can’t stop looking at them!