Local milliner, Melissa Vap, shares the story of how her career began, describes the similarities between hats and horses, and tells us where you can pick up one of her wonderful designs.
Q: How did your millinery career begin?
My grandmother taught me how to sew when I was a little girl. I worked on Wall Street and used to walk home in the evening. I studied all the window displays at Saks and Bergdorf’s and along Madison Avenue. I love fashion!
I began designing hats a couple of years ago. I had been invited to a wedding in France, and there wasn’t much of a selection in New York. I had to have one—but I had to wait to get to Paris to find one—at the last minute.
At the wedding, I fell in love with the hats. As each French woman moved around the room, it became obvious that her hat revealed her personality. The excitement and the confidence were real—as was the fun.
After that wedding, I made my first hat...