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When Brielle Hunt got engaged, she wasn’t sure what her wedding dress would look like or where she would find it. But one thing was for sure—her mom would custom-create her bridal veil and headpiece. After all, when your mother is a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology and a professional designer, there’s no way an off-the-shelf hair accessory will do.
“Like many little girls, I always dreamed of what I would wear on my wedding day. I even dressed up as a bride one Halloween!” says Brielle. “I had the unique opportunity to play dress-up in my mom’s shop for years, where I saw so many trends come and go. It was such an amazing gift to have my own personal designer throughout my life but, most importantly, on my wedding day—my mom truly implemented my vision of timeless glamour.”
Marie Hunt, owner of headpiece.com, actually created three headpieces with sparkly 14-karat gold, sapphires, opals and rhinestones for her daughter. Two veils were made of European net and fine French lace—made on 100-year-old looms by the same lace maker whose fabric graced Kate Middleton’s royal wedding dress. “Our French laces are so soft, you could sleep in them,” Marie says. “They melt off a bride like butter.” She also designed a third piece, Brielle’s ceremony veil, which included two long cathedral tiers.
Similarly, Marie’s clients have been requesting demure Juliet-cap headpieces with beading and lace, as well as Boho-style veils with beyond-floor-length trains, sometimes with two panels of lace slit down the back. Although a custom veil comes at a higher cost, Marie reminds brides that they are paying for exquisite fabric, beading and construction skills, as well as the designer’s years of experience. She believes that women who have done their homework will insist on a veil with proper couture techniques, intricate stitching and never—ever—any sign of glue.
Most brides who visit the headpiece.com salon in Pompton Plains are looking for a custom-designed, properly stitched wedding veil, rather than a mass-produced hair accessory from a millinery catalog, Marie says. “There are so many possibilities, it can be overwhelming for some girls. We offer many different veil patterns and, once a style is selected, each veil is hand-designed and intricately assembled and stitched.”
Marie prefers that brides visit her for personal consultations and fittings, but sometimes clients from across the country are unable to travel to New Jersey. In that case, the designer relies on photographs, sketches, phone calls and emails.
Special requests are always welcome. Case in point: One week before her wedding, Brielle asked Marie to design a bridal accessory for her golden retriever, Paisley. Since the pup was present at the wedding proposal and would also attend the wedding reception, the designer agreed to the last-minute request. So Marie gathered up the French lace remnants from Brielle’s bridal veil and quickly designed a couture creation for the stylish canine. In fact, Marie admits that she was still hand-stitching Paisley’s accessory the day before the wedding, at the bridal luncheon.” We say, “Way to go, Mom!”