The Origin of the word Milliner or Millinery

Many times over the years I have been called….The Hat Lady, The Hatmaker & The Mad Hatter… here is the origin of the word Milliner.


Oxford English Dictionary




Milliner – a vendor of “fancy” wares & articles of apparel, especially of such as were originally of MILAN manufacture.

First definition 1530’s  –  “Milan Bonnets”, ribbons, gloves.

Millineress…millinerial . 1800’s … ( I love millinerial  !!! )

In modern use…a person (usually a woman) who makes up articles of female apparel, especially bonnets and other headpieces….

Merriam Websters Dictionary

MillinerOriginates from Milan, Italy – from the importation of women’s finery from Italy in the 16th century.  A person who designs, makes, trims or sells women’s hats.



The designing of “one off ” creations. The raw felt or straw is blocked and molded (shaped) on wooden blocks by a milliner using heat and steam.


Some of my beautiful hat blocks

All of the hat will be sewn together by hand. No glue should ever be used.

Materials such as ribbons, trims, feathers and beads are of the highest quality.

These hats are the “haute couture” of millinery and are designed by the milliner especially for a particular client’s needs….for a special occasion.

Wendi from Philadelphia Philpot is a couture milliner!
Call 0411 22 82 32   email me