Going Gaga For Kensington And Chelsea Colleges Rising Millinery Star

Going Gaga For Kensington And Chelsea College

One of the world’s biggest names in music has gone gaga for a hat designed by one of Kensington and Chelsea College’s rising stars.

Talented designer Margaret O’Connor was catapulted into the spotlight after one of her hats was worn by Lady Gaga at the Isabella Blow: Fashion Galore! Exhibition, in London.

Lady Gaga, known as much for her eccentric sense of fashion as she is for her chart-toping hits, matched Margaret’s larger-than-life bespoke headpiece with an eye-catching all black outfit.

“I couldn’t believe it, I was so shocked when I saw Lady Gaga wearing my hat” said Margaret. “I didn’t feel normal for about two days, but once it sank in I was just really happy!”

Speaking about her opportunity to dress one of the world’s most famous women, Margaret said:

“A stylist requested six hats for Lady Gaga. I put in seven – one extra that I had just made and called it Marion after my mother. That’s the one she picked! My gut instinct told me to put in that hat.”

“The hat was part of a project I was working on for a photo shoot. I didn’t have a person in mind when I designed the hat, just a concept, and went with that. Lady Gaga has her own style and goes for bold, quirky and unique designs so it felt brilliant seeing her in one of my creations!”

Speaking about her ambitions Margaret added:

“I want to have my hats on the catwalk, photos of my hats on the front cover of high-end fashion magazines, and my hats to be stocked in big cities all over the world.”

Originally from Ireland Margaret came to London to develop her career as a designer and honed her millinery skills on Kensington and Chelsea College’s internationally renowned HNC Millinery Course.

Kensington and Chelsea College has a reputation for excellence in the creative arts, and is known for being London’s premier College for Millinery. The College has nurtured the talents of many gifted milliners including Justin Smith, and its annual end-of-year Millinery and Fashion exhibition is widely regarded as THE place to be to find the industry’s next big thing.

Since graduating from her HNC Millinery Course Margaret has gone from strength to strength and is fast becoming the go-to designer for unique, bespoke creations. She has worked for some of the biggest names in the industry including Noel Stewart and Philip Treacy and now runs her own business – Margaret O’Connor Millinery.

Encouraging other budding Milliners Margaret had a few words of advice:

“Master the trade and don’t worry about things too much – it will hold you back. Don’t copy other designers either, stand up and do your own thing and you will get there. Just go for it.”

If you are interested in a career in Millinery, Kensington and Chelsea offers a range of industry recognised courses and qualifications from beginners millinery to short courses and full-time Higher Education courses.

In February the College is also running two exclusive millinery masterclasses at its renowned Chelsea Centre, just off the world Famous King’s Road in Chelsea. To secure your place on the masterclasses listed simply enrol online in a matter of minutes:

Trimming Tricks with Straw – Hosted by Jane Corbett. Friday 21st Feb, 10:00-16:00. One day masterclass. £36.

Specialist Millinery Techniques: Working with Straw Plait – Hosted by Kirsten Scott. Monday 17th – Tuesday 18th February. 10:00-15:30. £62.

  • Kensington and Chelsea College leads the local learning agenda for adults and young adults in Art and Design, Health and Social Sciences and Management and Professional Development
  • The college operates across two sites based near Kings Road in Chelsea – with its fashionable boutiques and cafes, and Notting Hill by Portobello Road – with its world famous markets and iconic stalls selling vintage and cutting edge fashion
  • We are an associate college member for The National Skills Academy for Creative & Cultural
  • Ofsted rates our teaching as good. Our range of courses offer career enhancement opportunities, a credible alternative route to university and recognised qualifications leading to employment
  • We are an established and trusted college for delivering Apprenticeships, and professional, bespoke training to businesses across London that has led to strong partnerships with leading creative and cultural venues, including the V&A and Historic Royal Palaces
  • To find out about our full range of courses and training opportunities, and how we can help you develop your career or business visit, or call 0207 573 5333 for a copy of our latest prospectus.
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