Menu Donate Request our help

Helpline: 0300 102 1919

Red Arrows hat off to a flying start at Ascot!

The RAF Benevolent Fund's very own Brooke Harrison-Davies debuted this Angela Bruce Millinery creation at this year's Armed Forces Day at Ascot. In this guest blog we hear from to its designer and creator, Angela Bruce.

Angela Bruce and her creation

Angela works part-time as a Legacy Administration Manager for the RAF Benevolent Fund and also creates wonderful, bespoke hats for her own company, Angela Bruce Millinery, including the Fund's Royal Ascot hat featuring the Red Arrows.

She said: "I wanted it to be dramatic and to have movement, representing the plumes of smoke and something which represented aircraft. I started off with a model of a Red Arrow and played about with different ways of recreating it, whether it was going to be bigger or the same size as the model.

"This is the hardest thing I have ever made as making each Red Arrow was incredibly intricate. Working on such a small scale was difficult, having to get your hands and a needle into such a small space.

"The hat itself is very traditional millinery, stretching shapes over blocks to create it, but the Red Arrows on it are made in a more theatrical method, in a 3D kind of way, shaping the buckram and straw into a model.

"I enjoy making these kind of hats because they are more impactful and interesting. Plus they’re more challenging to make."

The Red Arrows hat was revealed at this year’s Armed Forces Day at Royal Ascot, alongside Angela’s 2015 creation, a Spitfire inspired by the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

And for next year? Angela is already planning headwear based on the RAF's Chinook helicopter – watch this space!


Related articles:

Sign up to receive the RAFBF e-newsletter