Ladies' Day was a success once again, as about 300 women paraded their hats around Devon and enjoyed the second annual Ladies' Day Tea.The day, sponsored by Dressage Collection, began with the hat contest, and participants showed off their creativity as they passed the judges in the Main Grandstand. This year's judges included Emmy winning television star Carson Kressley, 6abc's Alicia Vitarelli, NBC10's Bill Henley, Patrick Champalou from Cartier, Brenda Waites Bolling from Millinery Boutique in New York, Sheila Connolly of SCB Consulting and Beth Beverly from Diamond Tooth Taxidermist. "A lot are return judges who have a background in millinery, fashion or the equestrian world," said Ladies' Day Chairman Jen McGowan.
The judges certainly had some difficult decisions to make as the contest entries ranged from hats to fascinators to outfits such as a Great Gatsby themed duo.
The judges looked at four categories. The "Best of Devon" category was for the hat that best captures the spirit of Devon. "Most Fascinating" was for the best fascinator topper. "Best Hat to Toe" was for the best overall ensemble. The grand prize ribbon was awarded for "Best in Show," which is the hat that best incorporates the "Proper Toppers" British theme of this year's event.
Robin Sweet won "Best of Devon" for her picnic basket hat. Jasen Rhinehart, with a cream colored ensemble, and Emily Galloway, whose fascinator featured butterflies, both won "Most Fascinating." Amy Holzapfel won "Best Hat to Toe" for her pink dress and pink hat with flowers. The grand prize winner in the "Best in Show" category was Tiffany Arey for her lavender dress and hat with flowers in shades of purple and white. "I love all of the creativity and effort everyone puts into their hats," said Ladies' Day Chairman Jeanne Dechiario.
Each of this year's winners received a package from Kiehl's, and the "Best in Show" winner also received a gift card from Uber limousine service and a package from Cartier. The Ladies' Day Tea in the Devon Club followed the hat contest. Guests were treated to champagne, tea sandwiches, scones and other treats. The Ladies' Day Tea was first offered last year as a way to continue the Ladies' Day festivities.
"It's just a great way to get gals to dress up together in the middle of the day and it's a great Devon tradition," said Ladies' Day Chairman MaryKay Bergan.