Deirdre Hawken
| 1999

Deirdre’s work has been informed by her early training and work as a designer for the theatre where an eye for precision and detail are essential, which proved invaluable in her later training as a designer milliner. Deirdre produces bespoke couture headpieces, created in her studio in South East London.

She won a Qest Scholarship in 1999, at the age of 54 and was awarded £9000 to study couture millinery with Rose Cory who was the Queen Mothers milliner. As part of her award Deirdre accepted a work placement with the acclaimed milliner Stephen Jones. She was also able to study the collections of millinery in Metropolitan Museum, New York and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. After the completion of her scholarship she was offered many commissions and also exhibited and sold her work widely in the UK and abroad.

Her work is now included in the permanent collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, the Metropolitan Museum, New York, the Institute of Costume, Kyoto, Japan, the Philadelphia Museum of Art USA and the Hat Museum, UK. Deirdre’s work is included on the selected Photostore of the Crafts Council and she is a fellow of the RSA. She feels that the award of the Scholarship enabled her to achieve these goals, which would not have been possible without the scholarship.

She has exhibited her hat pieces in a solo gallery exhibition as part of Dazzle at the Manchester Museum of Art in 2013. She has recently created a range of jewellery which complements her work as a milliner, and she has been selected to show both the jewellery and hat pieces at Made London 2014. She is working towards developing further contacts with galleries and shops in the UK and abroad.


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