When & Where

Suitable For

  • 19 year olds and up are permitted on this course

Quick Facts

  • Availability Yes
  • Tutor Vesna Pesic
  • Course Code W21FASC22A

What you will learn

For fashionable or vintage hats, this this course will introduce you to professional hat making from straw and sinamay. Materials made from plant fibres have been used to make hats for many thousands of years and the techniques used to create beautiful shapes are relatively simple to learn. This course will enable you to produce your own stunning creations for both men and women, trimmed to perfection. If you have existing skills, you will be encouraged to research and develop your design skills alongside your technical abilities. All students will be encouraged to pursue their own project work where appropriate.

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • To develop designs for hats in straw and sinamay
  • To steam, block and cut a variety of straw materials
  • To use appropriate methods to construct hats
  • To develop and use trims using appropriate methods and materials
  • To apply a good finish to hats of your own design


  • Full fee
  • Concession fee
  • This course may be available for free
  • Class format and activities

    This is in-centre course. After examining and discussing examples and samples of hats, the tutor will demonstrate a variety of cutting and stitching techniques, and how to shape straw materials using steam. You will be taught how to use a steamer safely. There will be demonstrations of appropriate stitches, construction and finishing techniques. Handouts and other printed materials will be used as support for design and skill development. Teaching will be in groups and on an individual, one-to-one basis and you will be encouraged to develop your creativity.In order to ensure that you make the best possible progress on your course, you will have regular feedback from your tutor, in a constructive and supportive environment.

    Entry requirements

    This is a beginner/intermediate course. Suitable for people with some previous experience or no previous experience
    •Students must be able to speak, read and write in English
    •Competence in using a sewing machine is desirable but not essential
    •Basic numeracy is an advantage though not essential

    What you need to know before you enrol

    You are encouraged to collect images of hats/headpieces which interest you and sketch design ideas. Excellent attendance and punctuality are important, for students to fully achieve the course outcomes. It is beneficial if you can spare some time for completion/experimenting of activities outside of class time. Using a steamer involves standing. Please let your tutor know if this is difficult for you. Sewing machines have a foot operated speed control. You will be using tools under the direction of the tutor. The fashion studios are on the first floor of the Nancy Seear Building. There is wheelchair access via a stair-lift. Health & Safety information will be given to you at the start of the course and subsequent lessons where necessary. Please see this link for Covid safety guidance: https://www.morleycollege.ac.uk/help/our-response-to-covid-19/

    What you need

    A basic sewing kit: fabric scissors, small trimming scissors, tape measure, dressmakers pins, blocking pins (sometimes called household pins), millinery(straw/modiste) needles, a thimble(essential), tailor’s chalk/pencil, a variety of sewing threads Paper scissors, Uhu glue Also:
    • A comprehensive list of materials and suppliers will be provided at the first lesson An Apron
    • notebook and a pencil
    • You must provide your own straw hoods, trimmings, haberdashery, millinery wire etc.
    • Pattern paper and card is available for use in the studio
    • You will need to purchase a machine bobbin from the tutor for £1, refundable at the end of the course You may purchase some sinamay, millinery wire in class as well

    What you can do next

    We run a variety of specialist accessories courses, as well as other courses which might be of interest, including clothes making and pattern cutting. Please consult the course guide or http://www.morleycollege.ac.uk/departments/fashion for further details. You might want to try one of the following: Professional Hat Making:Buckram/Paris Net Foundation Fabric Hats Designer and Make a Bag Make a Fabric & Leather Tote Bag Milllinery Summer Trims: Feathers, Flowers and Sinamay. Contemporary embellishment Want to go further? Our Access to Fashion Diploma course can be the first step to making Fashion your new career. For more details: https://www.morleycollege.ac.uk/courses/1296-access-to-fashion/1863