What is millinery? Millinery is the design, manufacture, and sale of hats and headwear. A person engaged in this trade is called a milliner (that's us!) The term comes from Milener from the merchants of Milan who sold the best quality bonnets, gloves, jewelery, lace, straw, and ribbons from the early 16th century.
Do you make hats for men? Heck yea! We don't place gender identifiers on our hats; we make hats for humans and can make adjustments to the size* of the hat to fit you or make you something custom. We believe hats are empowering; we are passionate about hat making and getting more hats on heads!
How do I measure my head to get my hat size? We've heard many people say they have a hard time finding hats to fit an enormously large head or a tiny head or for those really big hair days. While it's not a science, it does help to know your head size to get a great fitting hat! Use a soft measuring tape, place the tape above your eyebrows around and over the biggest part of the bump at the back of your head. Take the measurement with the tape pulled to feel comfortable to you; imagine you are placing a hat on your head and how you want it to rest and feel. Note the number in inches.
Do you have hats to rent for special occasions? Before Covid, yes. There are not a lot of events right now and it's a health concern so the answer is, "not right now." I'm sure we'll bring that option back soon. Stylists + photographers, please email us about pulls for photo shoots.
What's the turnaround time for a custom hat? Typically 2- 3 weeks depending on the complexity of the design and the availability (or rarity) of materials. Not custom (ready-to-wear) hats are in stock and ready to ship within 1-2 days.
How much does a custom hat cost? We use the simplest formula: cost of materials + cost of labor/time + hat box + shipping + tax = cost of your hat. You are paying for professional design and customer service and fine quality materials. We are open to trade fors as well!
Do you do hat repairs and refurbishments? Yes! We launched the RECAP™ brand, a refurbishment program to recycle reinvent and repurpose hats that have been inherited or found and breathe new life into them. We can do this for your favorite hat or maybe one you've inherited from someone. So, yes. We do repairs and refurbs. Send word.
How do I sell with Shop Small Chicago? We buy wholesale for our retail shop and affiliate marketing programs for e-commerce and shopping events. Check out our Call for Brands section for details on how to apply.