The City Milliner

Making every day a hat day

The City Milliner

Making Every Day a Hat Day

The other day I was kicking myself. 

You know when you wish you’d taken a photo and you hadn't.

In this particular situation I’d lent my tailor a snap-brim trilby ( the one below) to wear on his journey to deliver a couple of suits to a client in Canary Wharf.

The City Milliner Loden Mix

I have to say, on the day in question, Mr Wainwright was looking particularly sharp in his fine grey chalk-striped flannel suit, with a Drakes chocolate & blue tie and pocket-square. He’d just had his wholecuts delivered, reborn and buffed to perfection by Cheaney’s bearded buffer. To top it all off the Loden mix wool, just stiffened, happened to fit him beautifully. 

“Off for a pose” he said, leaving the shop

And didn’t he just. 

Standing on the kerb,  carrying his suit bags, a hand raised to flag down a taxi. Altay (his Assistant) and I stood admiring him...until Altay said to me..“ You should have taken a photo”  

Kick. Kick. Kick.

Anyway photo failures aside- the day was memorable because Mr W came back an hour later beaming. 

Mr W doesn't really wear hats (yet).  However on this day he started regaling his titfer* experience to a client “ You’ve got to get a hat, you should have seen the looks I got from the ladies..there was this beautiful...”

And that’s just it- a man in a hat is worth a look or two. A man in a suit, or a lovely overcoat finished off with a smart trilby or fedora... well ...  

If the suit maketh the man...the hat maketh the gentleman.

Credits: Edwin Smith / RIBA Library Photographs Collection

Credits: Edwin Smith / RIBA Library Photographs Collection

And its not just about men in hats - women in hats are glorious too. 

Tania off to the office 

Tania off to the office 

One feels more elegant, more stylish, more 'madame' when one wears a hat. Don't take our word for it. Try it for the day. And then tell us about your journey to and from the office.

Because it is crazy how the world is more chivalrous to those wearing a hat. Its the way... strangers greet you with a smile, doors are opened more readily, compliments are given more often.

Does the hat maketh the lady?

On my commute to and from the Square mile, seeing someone in a nice hat makes me so happy that I might just break the age old London Commuter convention: 

- just briefly mind you-

but just enough to even tell him or her.. “nice hat”... and I definitely smile.


When I found the below picture of commuters crossing London Bridge in the fifties taken by photographer Edwin Smith, my face hurt from smiling too much. 

You can barely see anyone shy of a hat. 

Credits:  Edwin Smith / RIBA Library Photographs Collection

Credits: Edwin Smith / RIBA Library Photographs Collection

And yet now people are shy around hats. 

There are hats in the City... flatcaps and felts, fedoras in blue,black or grey, the odd bowler ... but they're too far and few between.

Let's revive hatwearing and banish hatlessness. Wearing a hat should be the norm- rather than the exception. Not just for a wedding, the races or a special occasion but at all of the above and the commutes in between.

Your hat should be something as natural to grab for as your jacket or coat. Come rain or shine. A hat for every season. Wool and fur felts for winter. Lighter shades and styles for Spring. Straws and Panamas for summer. Flatcaps all year round in different weights and materials.  And yes- get something spectacular for the races, something magical for a wedding... but get one for everyday too. 

Every day is a hat day, ladies and gentlemen, we just need to make it that way.



*titfer- cockney rhyming slang for hat.

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