About Us

Janet Williams, a qualified teacher, moved to Zimbabwe in 1980 to take up a teaching post. It was there that she met her husband David who was employed by UNICEF. Janet first studied millinery, in Zimbabwe in 1985. In 1988/89 she attended Kensington and Chelsea College of Fashion and Design in London, studying millinery, pattern cutting and fashion accessories. For three years from 1990 Janet lived in Jakarta, Indonesia and there started Hats A Head, a millinery business creating designer hats and teaching hat making. Later in Ethiopia Janet further developed the business and held a number of fashion shows with the United Nations Womens' Association. Over the years she built up her stock of millinery equipment and honed her skills learning from milliners in Perth, Western Australia and in New York. In 1995 she settled with her husband David in Ide near Exeter in the South West of England and acquired Exeter Sewing Machine Company. For the next twenty years they ran and developed the sewing machine business in tandem with Hats A Head. Many sewing and millinery classes were held in the class rooms at the shop. After retiring from Exeter Sewing Machine Company, Janet and David continue with Hats A Head, now based at Ide.

Committed to Quality

Large sinamay hat modelled by our beautiful friend Cheryl and photographed by John Ffoulkes.

All our hats are hand blocked by Janet in her millinery studio using our huge selection of wooden hat blocks. No cheap foreign imports! 

Creative designs.

Straw beret decorated with swirls, flowers and butterflies.

No one wants to wear something that everyone else is wearing. All our hats are individually created and are unique. If a hat or fascinator is needed for a special occasion it can be made to match your costume.


Large felt hat bought by a lovely lady at the Bridport Hat festival.

We are committed to making a hat or fascinator which you will love and enjoy wearing. If you are not completely satisfied we will be glad to provide a refund.