Millinery 2019

Aka “How Do I Buy a Hat or Bonnet?”

I feel bad when people message me saying “The hat I wanted already sold.” I want to be able to get everyone the millinery they want. Here is a little guide to how to buy my straw bonnets and hats.

This year, I will be trying to make and post 6 straw hats or bonnets each month during the school year. This means one or two pieces each week. During the summer, I will be sewing full time as my sole income.

I sell all of my straw millinery through my Etsy shop.

Pieces can sell quickly. Sometimes that is days. Sometimes that is hours. Sometimes that is minutes.

Be The First To Know

The best way to know new millinery is available is to subscribe to this blog. I post pieces here as I post them on Etsy. To subscribe and receive emails for each new post, look under my photo to the right for the subscribe box that says “enter your email address.

It is a good idea to know what size and style you want ahead of time so you don’t second guess yourself. Take a look at my post on hat sizes and measure your head. Then browse my blog to look at the different styles I offer.

When you see a piece you like, click on the orange Etsy button, also found under my photo.

My Millinery

I focus on two types of millinery: straw plait millinery and quilted/wadded winter millinery. All of my straw pieces are hand sewn using historic techniques. I use both original bonnet and hat blocks, as well as hand carved blocks for blocking my pieces. I use two different millinery sizings. While I primarily offer straw forms, I occasionally offer fully decorated pieces. When I do, I use appropriate techniques and as accurate trimmings as possible. Given the likelihood that antique silk ribbons will shatter or fracture, I strongly prefer not to use them in pieces to be worn. I want you to be able to wear your millinery for years.


I am slowly expanding the time periods I am creating pieces from. As of January, this is a rough outline:

  • 1400-1600s – Researching
  • Late 1700 – Starting to look at
  • Regency era – Developing appropriate shapes.
  • 1820s-1830s – Dabbling.
  • 1840s – Working off an original block.
  • 1850s through 1864 – Making a variety of bonnets and hats
  • Bustle era – Making occasionally. I am eyeing a couple original blocks.


For sizing, please be sure to read my posts on sizing and fit.

Working with original blocks, I find these bonnets and hats feel “average” to “small” for most modern women. Most of my pieces are average to small. I do try to regularly make average to large pieces as well. Each Etsy listing will have measurements.

  • Small is 20″- 21″
  • Average is from 21.5″-22.5″
  • Large is 23″-23.5″, maybe 24″



I will do my best to keep millinery pieces as affordable as possible. Please, keep in mind each piece is entirely hand crafted, that I hand sew each row of straw, and I hand select each trim used. With the current cost of straw, necessary materials and shipping, undecorated straw forms will start at $110. Variations in straw, style, and (brim) will influence the price.


I am currently not taking requests or commissions or orders. I would love to be able to. I am simply too far behind in last year’s request list to take any more at this time. Goodness, I still have an amazing custom dyed strsw from two summers ago to make up.

I will not do sales outside of Etsy because Etsy is also how I keep track of sales.

Winter Millinery

I am not sure if I will be offering winter millinery this year. I really want to destash much of my over stashed sewing stuff before I unpack silks for sewing hoods.

Let’s see. What have I missed?

Published in: on January 3, 2019 at 9:07 pm  Leave a Comment  

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