Lisa McFadden (Photo Credit: Sistarazzi for Steed Media Service)

Lisa McFadden above wearing a denim blue hat from her LM Crush collection (Photo Credit: Sistarazzi for Steed Media Service)

It’s time to rethink our wardrobe for this fall and winter, especially those of us who live in the East where winter 2016-17 is predicted to be colder than other parts of the U.S. And with the cool breeze comes one of our favorite accessories — the hat. Here to give us both fashion and function is milliner Lisa McFadden with her must-have chapeaus and berets.

“The fall must-have is the LM Crush, which allows you to create your own style by molding the hat,” she shares. The Crush resembles a beret that is adorned with a visor. “Two people can wear the exact same hat and look totally different.:

McFadden became a hat designer 10 years ago. She created hand-blocked hats, wool felts and velours that were an instant hit. She created a small line that her industry friends couldn’t get enough of. She sold out and realized she had a business.

At the time, McFadden wore her hair in locs and she couldn’t find a casual hat that fit her so she designed the first Crush with elastic back, sized from small to large, that could be worn by anyone with weave, locs or braids.

“Every season I like to add new colors. This season I am doing reversibles so this season you get two hats in one. I mainly use Italian wool, wool blends, sheers, tweeds and bouclés,” she tells. The hats retail at $50 and up.

Inspiration for this new collection?

This collection was all about texture and volume. I tried to find knits that are soft. I am also doing lined Crush hats as well to avoid hair breakage.

Will the lining be satin?

It will be a lycra spandex, the fabric used for bathing suits. I want the hat to hold its shape with something silky, a lining that moves with the hat. I want to get the maximum Crush appeal.

Are the toppers prêt-à-porter?

Yes. They are ready-to-wear. I sell directly to clients. I do custom as well for special occasions and special colors when requested. I do a wide variety of hats and headpieces, including bridal. I love doing specialty pieces. One of my trademarks is the puff which I actually use with pipe cleaners. I like to use unexpected materials in my work.

How do you care for the hats?

I suggest dry clean only. You can do a cold hand wash, but do not squeeze or ring. For the Crush, I suggest clipping it in the middle and hanging so the hat won’t end up flattened. Dry cleaners do a flat press and it will ruin your brim. The brim is designed to curve so with proper care, it will stay in place.

“Customers can join my mailing list and visit my collections on www.lisamcfadden.com,” the Milliner Guild Group member closes.

Yvette Caslin

I'm a writer, image architect & significance marketer. Love photojournalism, creative expression & originality.