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Hat Sales on the Rise! / Hat of the Day Sketch – Philip Treacy, 2009

April 21, 2010

Today I read an article on that indicates that sales of hats truly are on the rise and sales are predicted to increase well into 2015.  Sales are spurred by current fashion trends, “surging demand from emerging markets” (not sure which markets they’re referencing), and “product attributes” which I assume means the fact that hats are fabulous and people are finally starting to see that again!

Apparently the demand for retro-inspired hats as well as high-end hats are driving sales, something to which all of us milliners need to pay attention.

I for one am excited to see there are actual studies showing what we already knew to be true – the New Era of Millinery is well underway!


Speaking of the New Era of Millinery, today’s HOTD is by one of the premier milliners today, Philip Treacy.  I love, however, how similar it is to yesterday’s HOTD with the rose and feathers under the brim rather than on top.  The clean line of the felt is in sharp contrast to the disorderly array of feathers – a nice juxtaposition of textures and lines.

As always, please feel free to comment on this post below.  If you like what you see here, subscribe to this blog for more great millinery stuff!

Philip Treacy hat, 2009 - black felt (?) w/ rose & feathers

5 Comments leave one →
  1. April 21, 2010 2:15 pm

    It could also to be due to increased awareness of sun exposure. I for one started buying large brimmed summer hats several years ago after I 1) really got the message aobut sun dammage and 2) realized that there was really no way to keep my face from overtanning without smearing it with a thick coat of spf40 which had a tendancy to make my hair stick to my skin. Yuck. I also read some articles that suggested sun screen might not be that healthy anyway.

    I still wear sunscreen on my body sometimes but I usually try to wear light long sleve clothing and hats instead.

    In Denmark we still have a monarchy (it’s just a show, the country is 100% run by the parlimant) and the crown prince’s (the next in line for the throne) wife has a campaign every summer to encourage people to be caful about sun exposure–especially by using hats.

    On that note, I should mention that I have found it extremely dificult to find summer hats that are both stylish, versatile enough to go with most of my cloths, and actually functional (as in keeping the sun off my face, ears, and the back of my neck. Personally I go for hats that I could imagine Karen Blixen wearing–able to handle being outdors but also refined. I have my eyes pealed for something like the oversized straw hat that Samantha wore in the Sex and the City movie. I would totaly wear that to the beach to not work on my tan.

    • April 22, 2010 1:35 am


      That’s an interesting point. I have had several clients looking specifically for hats providing sun protection. It’s wonderful that Danish culture has such a visible spokesperson both for preventing skin cancer and for hats. I wish Michelle Obama would wear hats – that would do wonders for increasing the American woman’s confidence to wear fashion hats.

      Speaking of sun hats, I would love your feedback on my new sun hat, the Charlotte hat. I wanted a good classic sun hat that would also feel fresh/modern, and I wanted it to be both casual and somewhat dressy. If you get a chance, please let me know whether you think the Charlotte hat is a good summer solution for these criteria.


      • April 22, 2010 11:30 am

        I think that’s a hat that will appeal to a lot of people. It definitely fits *all* the criteria of functionality in terms of sum protection. I like that the brim is a bit floppy but still has enough substance to hold a shape if you want to fold one section up. The sash doesn’t really do anything for me. I find it too loose or without structure or something. Maybe I would prefer a plain band? I am not very good at ‘trouble shooting’ when it comes to figuring out why something doesn’t appeal to my taste. But there are probably tons of other people who will love it just as it is.

        I love that you are offering it in subdued color palates like tan but also fun/quirky ones like bright pink plaid. I think that the fact your hat looks great in two such different fabrics speaks the versatiliy of the design itself. Great work!

        You might try marketing your hat on cancer sites. I know that sounds awful but when I decided to start wearing head scarves those were the only sites I could find information on how to tie them and find nice scarves that were big enough. I also found that a lot of those sites had great summer hats because I guess people on chemo are sometimes light sensitive (and don’t have any hair to keep their scalp from burning). Anyway, it’s an idea.

  2. April 22, 2010 11:53 pm

    Erika, thanks for the great feedback! I actually have been selling to cancer patients and alopecia patients for over a year now. My sister, a two-time breast cancer survivor, went through chemo in 2005 so I’ve seen how chemo affects people. Not fun.

    Also, I’ve been approved as a vendor for the National Alopecia Areata Foundation ( and they’ll be adding me to their marketplace soon.

    Because I sell to so many people with hair loss, I try to make my hats as soft as possible. Even my labels are soft (and organic – best of both worlds).

    It’s challenging making styles that will appeal to a broad base of people yet can still be distinct enough to be special – and be functional on top of all that! Whew!


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