Hats Off To Ultimo TAFE

Millinery is the craft of making hats. Although millinery is a small market, the market in Sydney - mostly composed of model milliners and specialist couturiers (people who design clothing) - is of high standard and exceptional quality.

Work is seasonal, both in Sydney and in Melbourne, and tends to revolve around horse-racing carnivals and weddings that generally fall in summer. The Autumn Carnival in Sydney and the Spring Carnival in Melbourne are both boom times for milliners, with a bulge in the middle of the year for Ascot.

Hat designs are based on many different things - such as what event the hat will be worn to, what is in fashion at that time etc.

Lyndsay Mathieson: Milliner

Lyndsay started as a milliner only when she started the TAFE Certificate IV course three and a half years ago. Lyndsay says she is very happy that the quality of the course, her teacher, Jane Stoddart, and the work she has achieved to date, have confirmed her career choice as a millener.

A year ago, Lyndsay apprenticed herself to Sandy Busies out at Annandale, and says she has learnt a lot since effectively starting work with Sandy. She says that clients requirements, deadlines, the pace and the quality expectation has meant she has had to work very hard but she really enjoys the work. Lyndsay's personal style is artistic and sculptural. She works with a diverse range of materials, such as pure lace, leather, and various felts, which she loves for their architectural quality. Lyndsay admires her teacher, Jane, and is inspired by her work which she says is very modern and high couture.

About the TAFE Course in Millinery:

Certificate IV in Millinery is for people who want to learn and develop a range of creative, technical and theoretical skills needed to work in a workroom or studio as a milliner. Depending on the electives selected, they will learn about different areas of millinery, including: millinery design and development processes such as identifying and selecting appropriate materials, making felt for millinery, using skin, fur or leather for millinery, flat pattern making, millinery sewing and adhesion techniques; millinery production processes such as placing and cutting patterns, using millinery pressing, steaming equipment, hand blocking and shaping techniques, making stitched and blocked millinery, blocking and shaping complex millinery shapes; making and applying millinery trims, making couture millinery; consulting with and fitting clients; managing the millinery supply chain.

VJ Matthew Jenkin