Please advise me of the necessary tools and equipment that i need as a beginner.  I am working on a tied budget therefore please subscribe places or website i can get the millinery supplies.

As a beginner which is better to used the hat block or start from the scratch in making my first hat. 

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Hi Diane, Wonderful you are assessing the financial commitment to start learning Millinery. I do have 2 suppliers from Australia listed in Store & they do send product worldwide.

Hat Academy lessons are based on blocks and you need a basic dome crown block and collar which is used to link crown with brim and then a brim block Check out lesson trailers to view blocks I teach with. Beginner students are making hats based on these 3. As you progress you can afford to buy others.

Felts and Sinamay straw are easiest to work with but I will be launching new lessons with other straws soon. As you do lessons you can connect with me through lesson discussions.

Each lesson outlines requirements Beginner students usually buy from a supplier what they need for first 3-4 lessons to make a start. 

Enjoy, Elaine


Hi Elaine, Thanks for the info i will work with the USA supplier for now.  Is it ok to get unblock hat body in felt or

simamay or should i get the material for my lesson.  As a beginner do you have a list that i need to work from\

is it after i purchase the lesson will i know what are the material and tool i will need.

I need your help because i am new to this althought i have a little knowledge of some of the tools etc that are

required.  Please explain more on your last sentence concerning Millinery been addictive.

Thanks Diane

Unblocked Hat Body in felt is called a Felt Capeline, umoulded shape but big enough for a wide brim and a Felt hood will only create a crown with narrow brim - the former being larger is more expensive.

The first lessons are for sinamay hat . Click on red wording in my previous reply and it will open up for info how to find out requirements.

You see what you need when you click on Lesson Requirements before you buy.

You would need to buy 1metre of Sinamay for a Crown + Brim If you want to do 2 hats get another metre in a different colour Make sure you buy pre-stiffened sinamay as not worth your time to stiffen it for sake of a saving of a few dollars particularly with your first hat which you want to make successfully.

Click on red word blocks in previous reply as you do need blocks. Put message up on your facebook page as one student did asking "has anyone got any wooden hat blocks ?"-her girlfriend's mum has a cupboard full that she is happy to lend her...give it a try.

What I mean "addictive" is that once you start making hats you enjoy it so much you just need to keep doing it and you will be so proud of yourself wearing your OWN hat - made by you.

Connect with me if you need more help


One essential; a good pair of scissors, a couple in fact. I never mix my sinamay scissors with my fabric scissors.

Great tip !!

When I started, I tried to purchase some of my supplies from the sewing store.  With the exception of very basic materials, it is SO much better to buy products designed for millinery.  For example, millinery needles work much better than traditional needles for hand stitching hats.  


Hi Cindy Thanks for the advise.   I do have some of the basic thing like tape measure, sewing machine etc

I just need to get the hat blocks and a few other stuff.  I tried ebay for the blocks i am still shopping around for the

 jiffy hat streamer so i am getting their if you have any further info feel free to pass it on to me .


Hi Diane,

I received this email with an ebook about a USA block maker- so email Dave tell him I referred you from Hat Academy  He will send you the ebook  Do not know what his blocks are like but someone here may know. He uses a USA wood I am not familiar with. -Elaine

On 4/07/12 1:10 AM, "Dave Temple" <> wrote:

Thank you for your interest! I look forward to your feedback and please
feel free to email me if you have any questions.

This e-book was made using Book Creator for the iPad.

Hi Elaine Thanks for the info i am going to check out the website and keep you up to date

concerning my progress with the blocks. 


a cheeper alternative until you get a jiffy steamer is to use a stove top kettle or what my nana calls a berco which is an old electric open top kettle that doesn't stop boiling when its hot. I'm not to sure where you can get one these days tho, i've been lucky enough to get one from a garage sale.

I use a camping kettle that I got from a camping supply store. Works a treat.  It's basically just an aluminium tin (we call them 'billy's in Australia) with a lid and spout.  I put it on the stove to heat.  The important thing is to get steam concentrated so it comes through a small opening, i.e. the spout.  

Hi Miss Lavern has a beginner i am going to start with the kettle until i can afford the jiffy streamer

since I am keeping my budget within my mes.  Do u have any idea on purchasing a balsa hat block and brim I have been checking out eBay  but my only concern is with the brim.  Some of the Blocks that are

dispaly this is not size for them so i was thinking to get the hat block and then measure it and from their

i make the purchase for the brim.  What is your take on this.


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