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In the Studio with Christie Murray of Christie Millinery...

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We are always excited when we are able to bring you new milliners to our store, and love to bring you a diverse range of styles from across Australia, so it has been a great pleasure to bring the elegant work of Brisbane-based Christie Millinery to the virtual (and real!) shelves of The Eternal Headonist. Christie's work is a sophisticated journey through luxury materials, clean lines and a beautifully refined design aesthetic, with her season's campaign making us all want to spend a day in her magical headwear. Check out the breath-taking video below and we defy you not to long to be spirited away to that world... 

Christie Millinery has shown at Australian Fashion Week in 2015, been seen on the heads of Royalty, and won prizes at the annual Fashions on the Field Millinery Award at Flemington, so you know you're in for some quality headwear with pieces from Christie. Take a read of our interview to find out more about this talented new milliner to our store... 


TEH - Tell us about your collection for TEH this season, what have been your inspirations and what are you most excited about?

CM - The theme of my collection is ‘Come to life’ and it’s centred on a secret garden party. As a milliner, I’ve always felt that millinery only truly ‘comes to life’ when you try it on, and I wanted to convey this in my collection.

My Spring collection takes people on a journey through the garden. From sculptural, wrought iron inspired detailing at the gate, to a blend of floral, textural and organic elements once within the garden.

There's a little story behind the collection too... "You are invited to a secret garden party. You sense that something wonderful awaits you within those walls. Excitement builds as you open the gate. There, before you, lies a breathtaking garden, exploding with life. Guests are in elaborate headwear unlike anything you have ever seen. Wildflowers and buds emerge from natural fibres, creating a seamless transition of textural and organic elements.

The headwear unites guests with their surroundings, making it hard to distinguish where one starts and the other ends. Your eyes dance around the celebration. You cannot help but be filled with joy. The headwear has brought the garden party to life."

TEH - That's such an evocative story, it's so easy to imagine yourself there! How is your style described through this story? 

CM - Modern, fresh, sophisticated

TEH - The perfect 3 words for it! Has there been anyone or anything that has inspired this fresh, modern, sophisticated style? 

CM - I love the sense of balance and flow of Philip Treacy and the creativity of Stephen Jones. 

I spent some of my childhood on a tropical island and much of it in the outdoors, so nature will always have a large influence on my designs. I also lived in Japan and I feel that that sense of flow and balance, found in Ikebana and ‘Shodo’ or Japanese Calligraphy, has also influenced my aesthetic. 

TEH - When did you first decide to become a milliner, has it always been a dream or did something stoke the fire? 

CM - For me, it was the most overwhelming instinctual experience I’ve ever had in my life. I just knew that this is what I was born to do. I still find it difficult to explain why millinery resonates with me so deeply. I haven’t come from a traditional fashion or racing background. In a way, I think that’s a good thing as I don’t place any preconceived limits on what I am able to achieve.

What I love about millinery is not only getting lost in the design. It’s the way that different textures and fabrics work together. It’s working with my hands, and with people. It’s that feeling that you get when you have slaved away for 30+ hours on a piece and then you achieve the perfect 3 dimensional balance, and that huge sense of achievement when your client and headpiece become one. Millinery is so much a part of my being now that every headpiece is an extension of myself.

TEH - That’s one of the most passionate responses we've had to that question! With such a love for the trade, what's been the proudest moment or greatest achievement of your career so far?

CM - Too many exciting things to choose from! Donning my first Royal head with Zara Philips in January was very exciting. And I absolutely loved showing my collection at Australian Fashion Week this year! Watching my client win the National Oaks Day Fashions On The Field title was also wonderful, I just love making people happy. 

TEH - What achievements, especially that FOTF win! What do you love most about the madness of Spring Racing season?

CM - Everything! What’s not to love?! The colours, the excitement, the celebration. Getting to work with wonderful people to bring their ideas to life. 

TEH - With your expert insight in the field, what are your millinery trend predictions for this season?

CM - Millinery is a fashion accessory, so many of the trends we saw at Australian Fashion Week have filtered through into the millinery collections this year. Expect monochrome and metallics to feature strongly in addition to lace, sheer finishings and orange (which is the new black this season!). 

TEH - And what’s your top tip for creating the perfect race wear look with millinery?

CM - Always aim to buy your outfit first and then find Millinery to match. It’s more difficult the other way around! 

TEH - ...and we'd add, always bring your dress with you when trying on hats! Ok, now for a bit of hypothetical millinery fun... what would be your perfect millinery ménage a trois? I.e. If you made the hat, who would have designed the outfit, and who would be wearing it?

CM - Alexa Chung in Self Portrait wearing Christie Millinery. Boom!

TEH - Well Self Portrait is really proving to be the brand of the season, and Alexa, swoon, so that's a really fine choice! We hate to finish our little chat with you, it's been fun finding out more behind the Christie Millinery brand, so lastly take us to your studio and play us your favourite tune to get that hat making groove on...

CM - How do I choose? We always have music pumping in my studio! For psych up music, a bit of Mark Ronson ‘Up Town Funk’, Thundamentals or Peking Duck goes down well! For chilled tunes it’s usually Hermitude, Flume, Milky Chance or Alt-J. 

Thanks so much for your time Christie, it's a real pleasure having your beautiful millinery in our store <3

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