For the thirteenth consecutive year MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® and Old Friends have been teaming up for a unique online shopping experience called “Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby”!
An annual event, “Hats Off” features a series of four one-of-a-kind couture Derby hats created by MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® to benefit the retired racehorses of Old Friends. All proceeds from the sale of the hats go to Old Friends.
The fourth and final hat up for bid in our 2022 “Hats Off to the Horses” auction series for Old Friends honors Bellamy Road.
Owned by Kinsman Stable of Yankees owner George Steinbrenner fame, Bellamy Road was a multiple graded stakes winner whose 17 and 1/2 length victory in the 2005 Grade 1 Wood Memorial will always be remembered; his 1:47:00 time for this mile and 1/8 race still stands to this day. This handsome and beloved bay was retired to Old Friends in January 2021 courtesy of Jessica Steinbrenner, Irish Hill & Dutchess View Stallions, and Elliott Walden.
When I asked Michael Blowen, Founder and President of Old Friends his impressions of “Bellamy” he stated, “Even though I’m a longtime Red Sox fan, I’m starting to soften my anti-Yankee stance because I adore George and Jessica Steinbrenner’s Bellamy Road. He’s smart, handsome and he was George’s favorite athlete. We’re so grateful to Jessica for allowing us to care for her star. He not only inspires us but, obviously, lit a spark in Sally’s artistry as well.”
To showcase Bellamy Road we continue this month with our “Ladies of Old Friends” theme featuring the hard-working ladies of Dream Chase Farm as hat models. This month’s hat is dedicated to Bellamy Road and assistant farm manager, Tammy Crump who straddles duties at the main farm as well as the annex farm nearby.
“I had never been around horses in my life until I came to Old Friends and I just fell in love with them. All the horses have such a special place in my heart. I enjoy everyday here because I get to care for such amazing animals.” ~ Tammy Crump
Indeed, a very special chapeau was needed to honor this accomplished, beloved Thoroughbred athlete and to celebrate his retirement at Old Friends.
In order to learn more about Bellamy’s life I went online and watched videos of his races and read articles about his career as a racehorse.
Next, I made a sketch of the hat I had in mind…
At last fabrics were chosen and the creative process was underway!
A medium wide-brimmed Derby hat design was created using a unique blend of colors, shades and textures that showcases Bellamy Road’s dark bay coat and his Kinsman Stable racing silk colors of royal blue and chocolate brown.
The foundation for the “Bellamy” design was fashioned out of royal blue dupioni silk with a chocolate scroll pattern taffeta for the underbrim.
A unique floral design was used to showcase Kinsman’s stable colors using a medium rose curl created with alternating layers of chocolate silk organza and taffeta….
… that was nestled into a stunning display of bold royal blue silk organza petals of various lengths that curl at the edges.
Five black silk organza “feathers” top stitched with chocolate thread were then added to reflect Bellamy Road’s bay coloring.
A medley of chocolate silk organza and chocolate swirl taffeta tails lined with royal blue silk added some dimension and drama to the overall trim elements, and sprays of black hat veiling brought a kind of wispy backdrop to complete the presentation.
A half bow created in swirling chocolate taffeta with matching sash encircles the crown….
… and a one-of-a-kind bead button created in the Kinsman stable colors of royal blue and chocolate offers a final tribute to the Steinbrenner stable legacy.
The lining for the “Bellamy Road” hat was created in chocolate shantung to coordinate with the entire chapeau design.
The hat is stunning from every angle and measures approximately 19 inches end to end!
The hat was completed in early November, and was then shipped to Old Friends for the grand photo shoot with this month’s model, Tammy Crump.
And from all that I heard, everyone had a terrific time!
As a physical remembrance of Bellamy Road, several strands of his tail hair were braided and woven into the trim of the hat, creating a unique, one-of-a-kind Derby chapeau that captures Bellamy road not only in spirit but in substance as well.
Special thanks once again to Tammy for modeling for us and to Laura Battles for her stunning images!
The “Bellamy Road” auction hat is now up for bid at this eBay link. All of the proceeds go to the retired racehorses of Old Friends. Bidding ends April 11th at 8 PM EST.
To learn more about Bellamy Road, the horse, please visit the Bellamy Road webpage.
For more information about the “Bellamy Road” Chapeau please visit the Bellamy Road hat webpage.