Published On: Mon, Jun 6th, 2011

Boca hat store fashions styles for Kentucky Derby, Royal Wedding

By: Diane Feen

If you’ve been on the fashion dial lately, you know that everyone is talking about hats. Yes, the accessory that has been deemed a thing of the past (our grandparents didn’t leave the house without one) is now a thing of the present.

Hat lovers everywhere are rejoicing – and hat makers are just as thrilled. So the question remains – where can you get a great hat? And who will help you decide which hat is right for your face and your lifestyle?

Wonder no more – there is a great hat shop right here in Boca Raton called Hats Etcetera. This wonderful hat shop, located on North Federal Highway, has everything a hat lover (or a newcomer to the hat landscape) would want. All of the hats are custom-made and designed by Hats Etcetera owner and founder Carina Gatto.

Gatto is the brains behind this intimate upbeat shop (with the design workshop in back) and she is the master crafter of some of the most beautiful hats on the planet. Women come to Boca Raton from around the country to see Gatto and get fitted (and fashioned) for a hat.

Gatto’s hats are so beloved that her shelves are near empty. That’s because everyone came to her for custom made headwear that would outshine the hat worthy events they attended. There were those who attended the Kentucky Derby and others who stayed right at home (in Boca Raton and Palm Beach) but held Kentucky Derby and Royal Wedding parties. But everyone had one thing in common – they held their heads up high in creations from Hats Etcetera.

“People have been coming to me for hats for the Kentucky Derby and for local Kentucky Derby and Royal Wedding parties in Boca Raton and Palm Beach. Some people ordered their Kentucky Derby hats four months in advance of the race.  I also made a hat for the winner of the Kentucky Derby’s wife, Leona,” said Gatto.

What also brought Gatto to the attention of the media stage is that she made a hat for a local woman who attended the Royal Wedding of William and Kate. Gatto won’t divulge the name of the lucky woman, but she did tell us that she made her a dusty rose colored fascinator with gray folded ribbon and a silver spike ostrich feather.

“She came in with her outfit and we looked around and I thought a small hat would be best for her. Also, when you’re traveling you don’t want to go with an enormous hatbox,” she said. “The small whimsies, the Fascinators, they call them in England, are so popular right now. Everyone wants them with the feathers and the spikes and in the most delicious colors you can make them.”

Hat making is a rare art form that has been kept alive by people like Gatto. Her mother Rika made hats in the illustrious hat days of the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s and taught her daughter the trade. In those days a woman or man did not leave the house without a hat on their head. And if people could see how beautiful the hats are at Hats Etcetera they might just return to those heady, hatty days.

Gatto’s hats are indeed works of art and are made with crystals, embroidery, flowers, bows and bands that fit the shape of the hat. “My hats are one-of-a-kind so you know you won’t be seeing anyone else in the same one.”

That’s for sure, not many people have the fine taste and talent to turn out hats fit for a queen (or a local princess). Hats Etcetera also has an embroidery department with embroidered (and monogrammed) greeting cards, pillows and shirts.

 

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