The Chester Grosvenor celebrates its 150th anniversary this year and, just in time for the racing season, milliner Laura Apsit Livens has designed a stunning, individual hat that is inspired by the hotel.
Former Christleton High School pupil Laura grew up knowing the hotel well and before her career took off she was the hotel’s milliner, producing one off creations, sometimes in a hurry, for the hotel’s clientele.
Laura has her own atelier and millinery showrooms, working for her own label and also in collaboration for other design houses including Louis Vuitton and jewellers Mappin and Webb. Her star-studded clientele list includes Paloma Faith, Rita Ora and Jessie J, as well as having worked with Phllip Treacy on the designs for the wedding of wedding of Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and Catherine Middleton in 2011.
Laura’s design for The Chester Grosvenor was inspired by the hotel’s location next to the much lauded Eastgate clock and also by the ironwork of the sign that has hung at The Chester Grosvenor for many decades. She also took inspiration from the rich colours found in the hotel’s interior.
Laura said: “It was such a joy to draw inspiration from The Chester Grosvenor. It is an icon in the city and epitomises tradition and elegance.
“I am a staunch believer in tradition. I still use very old couture techniques, each piece hand blocked and stitched without any use of machinery to obtain the highest quality finish.”
Paul Cookson, general manager of The Chester Grosvenor said: “Laura is such a talented milliner and also a friend to the hotel for many years. We are just delighted that she has taken the time to honour our anniversary with one of her amazing hats.”
Laura’s Grosvenor hat is on display in the hotel’s reception and is available to purchase for £770.