Harlow Women's Institute

Member of the Federation of Essex Women's Institutes
Charity Registration Number 228992

Thursday 15 February 2024


 Because of a variety of seasonal ailments, only twenty members and two visitors attended the February meeting.  The good news is that both visitors are planning to join the WI.

After Jerusalem and the President’s greeting, the business of the meeting (minutes and announcements) proceeded briskly, and then the speaker was introduced.  Susan Widlake runs Mill House Millinery which makes bespoke hats and fascinators.  As well as bringing a selection of hats to display, Susan talked enthusiastically about her life and how she turned an interest in millinery into a successful business.   She has often been the subject of magazine articles and is sometimes asked to lend pieces for exhibition.  She went through the making of a hat step by step and then showed each of us how to make a small ‘lily’ ornament, suitable for attaching to a headband.  This proved remarkably straightforward, even for the most fumble-fingered of us!  She also showed us how to reduce the size of a too-large hat by using padding in discreet places.  Her talk was enjoyed by everyone, and much close interest was shown in the hats on display.  

After the tea interval, the raffle was drawn and the competition judged.  After a quick reminder about forthcoming events, the National Anthem was sung, and the President wished everyone a safe journey home.