Always work with professionals

If there’s only one thing that my mother drummed into me from a young age that actually registered with me, it was the old adage if a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.

In my 22 years of being in the work place, I have come to realise that you get what you pay for. Take short-cuts and you get short-changed.

In my desire to take Dilly Daydream into its next phase, I knew instantly how I wanted to take it there. Pick up one of my hats in the flesh and it’s love at first sight, but how can you get the feeling of colour, texture and quality when looking at the hat on a computer screen? The answer, by employing a mix of professional photographers, models and an incredibly talented make up artist. My aim was to give my hats a feeling of life, beauty and high-end craftsmanship.

Let’s face it, Vicky Boateng, our model, would still look stunning in a knitted tea cosy, but her beauty also comes from within, and having sat half-dressed for the best part of the day on a hard village hall floor, she remained the true professional, smiling and laughing right up to chucking out time. For James Nader,  my favourite fashion photographer of all time, nothing was too much trouble, and he snapped happy for a solid 5 hours (only breaking for the odd cuppa and a tuna and sweetcorn sarnie) determined to get through my range of over 50 hats and taking more than 300 lifestyle shots. Katie, our diligent make up artist, kept the enthusiasm going, doing her thing with brushes and pots and bottles of potions and a range of fake eyelashes to die for.

And for the hat photographs themselves, I am lucky enough to work with one of the real pros – Paul, by day, owner of a British stock library,  spent many an evening hunched over a camera in a light tent taking shot after shot to try and give the hats their truest representation and then patiently cutting out each hat image to make it web ready. It’s lucky he’s my husband too.

But the award for patience and understanding goes to Karl Tall, my friend (still, I hope) and web designer extraordinaire, who took a one-dimensional site and turned it into something sophisticated, slick and something I’m truly proud of. I consider myself extremely lucky to have worked with these very clever people.

It just goes to show, you get what you pay for.