Meet Jill Humphries, the talent behind some of Australia’s finest millinery. Jill works predominantly with leather but is not afraid to dab her fingers in other textiles. Her creations certainly haven’t gone unnoticed. Last year Jill was awarded the Myer Fashions on the Field Millinery Award. I recently caught up with Jill to talk about headwear for this season. She is making my Derby Day piece and I cannot wait to reveal what she has in store for me!
Q: How did you get started in millinery?
I was managing an event for 600 at the Melbourne Cup and met a few milliners. After chatting I realised that you actually could study millinery so I signed up for night school. Not long after I threw in the corporate towel and made the decision to stay home with my children. At the time my husband and I thought if I could sell a couple of hats a month we could make it work…
Q: Where do you draw inspiration from?
A lot from nature. I have many floral references in my work, but I also let the textile tell me what to do with it.
Q: What are some of your favourite pieces you’ve made over the years and why?
The diving bird that I won the millinery award for is a firm favourite as it was such a fun process and an unexpected piece from my usual style. Also my daisies and roses in leather I adore. When I first started there were no milliners working in leather so I trained myself. The success of the medium is what has made my signature style
Q: Who is the ultimate person (celebrity) you would like to design a headpiece for?
I would love to work with Cate Blanchett due to her eternal style. Then again on the other side of the spectrum someone like Gin Wigmore or Debbie Harry
Q: What is your favourite Spring Carnival race day and why?
I love oaks day as it represents the milliners that have spent the last few months stitching and creating to make the carnival what it is.
For Jill’s full range please visit her website www.jillandjackmillinery.com