Interview and Feature with Debra Shirley

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FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY, I got to interview and write a feature on the extremely talented hat and fascinator designer, Debra Shirley. You all know who she is from my Victorian photoshoot I did last year, my Burlesque shoot I did last year, my recent article on her with my latest hat from her in the, “BLACK VEILED BEAUTY” article, and more. If you haven’t seen all those posts, click on her tag here or type her name into SEARCH here to see all the posts I’ve done on her. 

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Here is my interview that I did with her. I absolutely am in love with Debra and her talent!!

1. How did you get into making these gorgeous hats, fascinators, and head pieces?
1).  Princess Diana inspired my love of hats at the age of 10, when I borrowed a book on her from the library. She was so stunningly beautiful in all of the hats that she wore that I’m certain she seared my 10 year old brain into linking beauty with hat wearing.  It did not occur to me that I could design hats until I was studying fashion design in my 20’s. Whatever class that I wanted to take during the summer was full and I did not want to remain idle so I ended up taking a Millinery class to keep busy.  I quickly became enamored with the art, and the skills involved in creating came oddly natural to me.
2. How long have you been designing your art?
2).  I first studied millinery in the 1990’s, and soon after was able to start a full time job as a Milliner in a high-end Bridal Salon in Chicago, designing wedding veils and headpieces. As can sometimes happen with trying to earn a living, I lost focus on my true passion for hats and playful headwear. It wasn’t until 2014 that I decided to devote time and energy into creating hats and fascinators and getting them out into the world.
3. Did you teach yourself or take a class when you were starting out?
3).  Veronica Chin, a very talented Milliner at Burning Bush Millinery was my millinery teacher when I first started out.  I took millinery 1, and 2 which is all that the school offered. The school ended up adding a 3rd level class to its curriculum, because of the interest of myself and a few other students at the time.  I learned classic techniques such as blocking, pattern making, wiring and embellishing.  I took what I learned and expanded as much as I could. Each time you make a new piece you can learn from it.
4. What are your favorite events to create your fascinators and hats for?
4).  I love to create hats and fascinators for any event that a woman wants to dress up for and feel fabulous. That could be a day at the horse races, a polo match, a ladies luncheon or even a special photo shoot!
5. What’s your main source of inspiration?
5).  Inspiration can strike in various ways. One of my favorite ways to be inspired is to work off of the colors or details in a dress or favorite outfit. I like to pull the concepts out of the print of a garment and bring them to “life” in headwear, as if the hat is an extension of the outfit.  Sometimes I am inspired by a separate component or embellishment such as a flower or feather.  One piece can get me excited and I start looking for other pieces to go along with it, until the next thing you know, its a finished hat!
6. What’s the best compliment that you have received from a client?
6).  The best compliment that I have ever received from a hat client?  It doesn’t get any better than  “I felt so beautiful wearing your creation” the key word is “felt”. I love when women “feel” beautiful  in addition to looking beautiful.
Debra and I have developed a great relationship and I’ve probably said this before but I’m so extremely happy that I met her and have become friends with her. I hope to see her soon. I hope you enjoy her beautiful photos to give you an idea of what she can create and make sure to check out all her sites.
P.S: Thank you Debra, my talented fellow artist friend!
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Black-Veiled Beauty

Here is my latest millinery creation from Debra Shirley. She is so talented and I love owning and wearing her amazing hats and fascinators. I was wanting a black hat and something different than my other hats and the other pieces I have from her and what I got exceeded my demands.

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   This black hat has black feathers with hints of glitter that are just enough to add that extra glamorous flair without being too much or cheesy. The hat also has a fish-netted veil which I absolutely love. I’d always wanted a veiled hat and thought they were so classy and elegant when I would see them displayed in stores. I have an upcoming event which this hat will be perfect for.

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   Debra is so sweet and is a great communicator with her clients. She makes sure that what she is wanting to make you is exactly what you want. Debra always makes sure that her vision and your vision are the same. I’m very glad I met her and she has become a sweet friend to me. I know I’ve said this before in previous articles I’ve posted about her but I recommend her to anyone who wants a unique piece of art that you can wear. Stay tuned for my upcoming interview with her. If you haven’t seen my previous articles I’ve written on her or my photoshoots I’ve done with her hair pieces, definitely check them out. And of course check out her shop posted down below. You always feel beautiful the moment you put any of her fascinators and hats on.

 

https://www.etsy.com/shop/millineryetc

Passion Pinups Magazine

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Good morning everyone. I’m so excited to announce that the winter and holiday issue of the pinup magazine, “Passion Pinups” came out today and guess who their covergirl is…..ME! I’m so honored to be on the cover and I wanted to thank everyone who is part of of Passion Pinups for making an incredible issue. Make sure to contact Passion Pinups on Facebook, their Twitter, or on their Instagram page to get your copy of this beautiful issue!

Sex Kitten Pinup Magazine

Volume 1, Issue 3


   Hello everyone. I’m so excited to announce my second time being published in Sex Kitten Pinup Magazine. Although this issue was mostly summer based, it came out later than expected because of important issues but I am so happy with this issue. (I will also be in the Halloween edition of Sex Kitten Pinup coming very soon so stay tuned.)

   Issue #3 is very special to me, because not only were my photos published but I was specially asked to write an article called, “What Pinup Means to Me” which was also published. I was very honored to be asked. I love and have a great relationship with the creator Miss Corpse of Sex Kitten and want to thank her for asking me to be contribute to the magazine.  Hope you enjoy my photos, some you may have seen before, and I definitely hope you all enjoy my articles in this issue.

   To get this issue, you can buy it digitally or in print. I always love print. To buy this issue and other issues go to http://www.magcloud.com/user/misscorpse.  If that link doesn’t work for some reason, you can also get the issue on their Facebook page. Check Sex Kitten out on Instagram at @sexkittenpinupxoxo and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/sexkittenpinupxoxo/.