Historically, milliners, typically women shopkeepers, produced or imported an inventory of garments for men, women, and children and sold these garments in their millinery shop. Many milliners worked as both milliner and fashion designer, such as Rose Bertin, Jeanne Lanvin, and Coco Chanel.
The millinery industry benefited from industrialization during the nineteenth century. In 1889 in London and Paris, over 8,000 women were employed in millinery, and in 1900 in New York, some 83,000 people, mostly women, were employed in millinery. Though the improvements in technology provided benefits to milliners and the whole industry, essential skills, craftsmanship, and creativity are still required. Since the mass-manufacturing of hats began, the term milliner is usually used to describe a person who applies traditional hand-craftsmanship to design, make, sell or trim hats primarily for a mostly female clientele.
The term milliner, originally from "Milener", originally meant someone from Milan, in northern Italy, in the early 16th century. It referred to Milanese merchants who sold fancy bonnets, gloves, jewellery and cutlery. In the 16th to 18th centuries, the meaning of milliner gradually changed from a foreign merchant to a dealer in small articles relating to dress. Although the term originally applied to men, milliner came to mean a woman who makes and sells bonnets and other headgear for women since 1713.
Learning of millineryEdit
Milliners work independently based on job order specifications or their designs, observing the regulations regarding work safety, health protection, environmental protection, and ensuring quality and efficiency. They combine their uniqueness, innovation, and technical skills and use different materials and auxiliary materials. In some cases, they plan and organize their schedules in cooperation with their customers' various needs. They also collaborate with the team or the apprentice to the presentation and sale of the products.
The millinery industry's apprenticeship culture is commonly seen since the 18th century, while milliner was more like a stylist and created hats or bonnets to go with costumes and chose the laces, trims, and accessories to complete an ensemble piece. Millinery apprentices learned hat-making and styling, running the business, and skills to communicate with customers. Nowadays, this apprenticeship is still a standard process for the students who freshly graduated from the millinery schools. Many well-known milliners experienced this stage. For example, Rose Bertin was an apprentice to a successful milliner Mademoiselle Pagelle before her success.
Special tools and materials used by millinersEdit
A wooden hat block is an intricately carved wood form shaped by skillful woodworkers. Hat blocks are the tools of the trade for milliners in creating a unique hat crown shape. Some of the hat blocks are ensembles with crown and brimmed, while some are only with crown or brim or designed for fascinators. Milliners always have an extensive collection of different hat blocks because there are specific hat sizes and custom shapes for every hat block. In the blocking process of a hat, milliners used push pins and a hammer to hold the adjustable string along the crown's collar and the brim's edge.
A floral-making iron is a unique iron used by milliners to create different floral petals or leaves as the ornament for hat decoration. In the past, candles were used to heat these irons with various shapes of metal in one set. Nowadays, these irons are electric. A ball-shaped metal heading is commonly used for the curve of floral pastels.
Milliners often use buckram, a stiff cotton (occasionally linen or horse hair) cloth with a loose weave. Millinery buckram is impregnated with a starch which allows it to be softened in water, pulled over a hat block, and left to dry into a hard shape. Millinery buckram comes in many weights, including lightweight or baby buckram (often used for children's and dolls' hats), single-ply buckram, and double buckram (also known as theatrical buckram or crown buckram).
Notable hatters and millinersEdit
This is a partial list of people who have had a significant influence on hat-making and millinery.
- International Hat Company, an American manufacturer credited with inventing one of America's most popular early 20th century harvest hats for field hands, farmers, and workmen.
- Hawley Products Company, an American manufacturer credited with inventing the tropical shaped, pressed fiber sun helmet used from World War II through the Persian Gulf War.
- John Cavanagh, an American hatter whose innovations included manufacturing regular, long and wide-oval fitting hats to enable customers to find better-fitting ready-to-wear hats.
- James Lock & Co. of London (founded 1676), is credited with the introduction of the bowler hat in 1849.
- Teofilo Garcia, recognized as a National Living Treasure in the Philippines for pioneering the tabungaw hat, a headwear made from gourd.
- John Batterson Stetson, credited with inventing the classic cowboy hat
- Giuseppe Borsalino, with the famous "Borsalino" Fedora hat.
- Akio Hirata is the most influential milliner in Japan who collaborated with many Japanese famous fashion designers, including Yohji Yamamoto and Rei Kawakubo. He also created and designed hats for Japanese Empress Michiko since 1966.
- Anna Ben-Yusuf wrote The Art of Millinery (1909), one of the first reference books on millinery technique.
- Rose Bertin, milliner and modiste to Marie Antoinette, is often described as the world's first celebrity fashion designer.
- Coco Chanel, creator of the fashion house Chanel, and of Chanel No.5.
- John Boyd was one of London's most respected milliners and is known for the famous pink tricorn hat worn by Diana, Princess of Wales.
- Lilly Daché was a famous American milliner of the mid-20th century.
- Frederick Fox was an Australian born milliner noted for his designs for the British Royal family.
- Mildred Blount is the first African American milliner to design hats for Hollywood films "Gone with the Wind' and 'The Easter Parade.' Her clientele included Joan Crawford, Louise Beavers, Marian Anderson, Gloria Vanderbilt, and other Hollywood stars.
- Mr. John was an American milliner considered by some to be the millinery equivalent of Dior in the 1940s and 1950s.
- Stephen Jones of London, is considered one of the world's most radical and important milliners of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.
- Simone Mirman was known for her designs for Elizabeth II and other members of the British Royal Family.
- Barbara Pauli was the leading fashion milliner and modiste in Sweden during the Gustavian era.
- Caroline Reboux was a renowned milliner of the 19th and early 20th centuries.
- David Shilling is a renowned milliner, artist and designer based in Monaco.
- Justin Smith is a milliner creating bespoke and couture hats under the J Smith Esquire brand.
- Philip Treacy Irish-born milliner; first milliner for 80 years to be invited to exhibit at the Paris haute couture shows.
- Perry, Lorinda (November 1916). "Millinery as a Trade for Women". Monthly Review of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 3 (5): 32–38. JSTOR 41823177.
- "Straw Millinery". If I Had My Own Blue Box. 26 March 2009. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- "milliner | Origin and meaning of milliner by Online Etymology Dictionary". etymonline.com. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- Tréguer, Pascal (12 August 2016). "The word 'milliner' originally meant 'native or inhabitant of Milan'". word histories. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- "Milliner". American Institute for Innovative Apprenticeship. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- "Vintage Fashion Guild : Fashion History : History of Hats For Women". vintagefashionguild.org. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- "Upcoming Events – Millinery CoursesMillinery Courses". Millinery Courses. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- "The Blocker Shapes and Styles the Hats – Brent Black Panama Hats". brentblack.com. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- "flower making iron". PresentPerfect Creations | Original hand crafted flower accessories in fine fabrics and genuine leather. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- Hart, Eric (2013). The Prop Building Guidebook: For Theatre, Film, and TV. Taylor & Francis. p. 292. ISBN 9780240821382.
- "The Copyist". The Illustrated Milliner. The Illustrated Milliner Company. 14 (7): 68. July 1913. Retrieved 8 October 2019.
- McMasters, Lynn (1 November 2005). "Buckram 101". Finery. Greater Bay Area Costumers Guild. Retrieved 8 October 2019.
- Bowler hat makes a comeback Telegraph (London). Retrieved 9 June 2012
- Tobias, Maricris Jan. "GAMABA: Teofilo Garcia". National Commission for Culture and the Arts. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
- Reynolds, William and Rich Rand (1995) The Cowboy Hat book. p. 8 ISBN 0-87905-656-8
- FashionModelDirectory.com, The FMD-. "Akio Hirata – Fashion Designer | Designers | The FMD". The FMD – FashionModelDirectory.com. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
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- Jones, Stephen & Cullen, Oriole, ed. (2009). Hats: An Anthology. V&A Publishing. ISBN 978-1-85177-557-6.
- Steele, Valerie (2010). The Berg Companion to Fashion. Berg. pp. 72–73. ISBN 978-1847885920. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
- "John Boyd". The FMD – FashionModelDirectory.com.
- "Mildred Blount: First African American to Make Hats for Celebrities". Black Then. 7 September 2019. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
- "Mr. John, 91, Hat Designer for Stars and Society". 29 June 1993.
- Biography of Stephen Jones on the V&A Museum website, accessed 1 April 2009
- Hillier, Bevis (13 October 1985). "Hat Trick". LA Times. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
- Cartner-Morley, Jess (16 April 2002). "Who wants to be a milliner". The Guardian.
He has created hats to accompany the catwalk collections of Alexander McQueen and Valentino, has been named British Accessory Designer of the Year five times, and was the first milliner in 80 years to be invited by French fashion's governing body, the Chambre Syndicale, to take part in the Parisian haute couture shows
- All Sewn Up: Millinery, Dressmaking, Clothing and Costume
- 18th Century millinery
- Popular Science, November 1941, "Pulling Hats Out Of Rabbits" article on modern mass production hat making
- Individuality in millinery, a 1923 book on hat-making from The Metropolitan Museum of Art Libraries (fully available online as PDF)
- Millinery guide (UK)