One of the few joys of my job is the annual fluffing and puffing of hats. Not just any hats…Kentucky Derby hats! If you’ve ever watched the greatest two minutes in sports, you will know that you better not step foot in Churchill Downs that day without a Derby hat on your head. It’s practically a requirement for admission. And there is no greater faux-pas than showing up in a hat like someone else’s. GASP!!!! The best way to avoid this tragedy (sad, but true) is to make your own.
Now, as a native Louisvillian, I don’t go to the Kentucky Derby as it’s next to impossible to obtain good seats. You have to wait for someone to die. Literally. So, instead, I get to dress up cute local sorority girls in fancy dresses and home-made Derby hats. The little darlin’s then stand in the rotunda of our airport and greet incoming passengers with a pretty smile, a smashing Derby hat and of course a Woodford Reserve bourbon ball. If you’ve ever been to Kentucky, you know we pride ourselves with horse racing and bourbon, so of course the two go together! Nothing gives me chills faster than hearing the call-to-the-post or make me tear up faster than hearing the crowd sing My Old Kentucky Home.
My partner in crime, MM, and I made the annual pilgramage to Dee’s Crafts to buy what I like to refer to as “naked hats”. Then we buy the cutest ribbon available, silk flowers, feathers and anything else we can find to turn “naked hats” into custom designed, one-of-a-kind Derby hats!!!
Here are this year’s “naked hats”:
And…the finished hats!
And that’s the fabulous MM in the center photo wearing her sassy orange hat!