Welcome to Pinkham Millinery.

Pinkham Millinery Storefront (1)

Step inside and you will find skillfully crafted custom hats in all colours, shapes and sizes made by renowned milliner Dayna Pinkham. Dayna is one of North America’s best. Pinkham’s hats have a worldwide presence and with her signature style – vintage elegance mixed with modern lines. Dayna’s work has topped actors, rock stars, ambassadors, and graced the Kentucky Derby.

Pinkham Millinery (1b)

Provide the space for experts to do what they do best, and something special can happen… perhaps remarkable and memorable, and if you’re lucky, your life will be shifted in some small but permanent way.

This is my story with Dayna Pinkham.

I knew what I wanted but no idea how to get it ‘right’. How do you order a custom hat anyway? How does it work? I put myself in the expert’s hands. Measurements were taken, the hat material and colour selected, and I was on my way. Dayna asked me to pop back for a fitting in a few days…

Fitting day.

  • Have a seat.

Porkpie Hat Fitting (1-1)

  • Try the hat on. Wait, what? I didn’t order a bowler! When it first went on I honestly had a little stress moment thinking I had miscommunicated.

Porkpie Hat Fitting (2-2b)

This is when the magic began. Dayna guided me through how a hat should fit, where it should sit on my head, the tilt, the height, the fold of the brim… everything.
Porkpie Hat Fitting (3-3)

Dayna as the expert did not tell me what I ‘should’ do. She showed me. She pinched and folded, rolled, tipped and tucked the hat on my head. Through demonstrating she let me come to the ‘right’ decision for what worked. Letting someone who’s put in their 10,000 hours work their magic for you is one of the great privileges in life.

Porkpie Hat Fitting (4-4)

At this point I knew I had not ordered a bowler, and I knew I was definitely not going to get one either! The transformation of this hat in the fitting – every decision noted and pinned – was amazing.

Porkpie Hat Fitting (5)

The last decision to make was the finishing hat-band, the ribbon, a nod to the traditional fedora. This is where personal style really kicks in, but this is also where working with an expert pays dividends. Dayna pulled together a selection to choose from but with her commentary (and great support from the ‘Audrey‘ in my life) the ‘right’ one just seemed obvious.

6 to 8 weeks later…

My bespoke Pinkham hat arrives!

Pinkham Millinery Hat - Clemens Rettich

Not a bowler. No, this hat is a ‘porkpie’ made of deep navy, almost black, felt – a felted nutria/rabbit blend of fur from the Czech Republic, in a factory that is over 200 years old.

I love that space created by skill, discipline, and creativity – a space completely inhabited by Dayna Pinkham.  I am grateful to have been in that space, and for the story and the hat I got to take away from it.

Clemens Rettich - Porkpie Hat - Pinkham Millinery (2)

Check out this television news story on Dayna and Pinkham Millinery.

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