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The story of Hills Hats

In Blog

We discovered Wellington based high-end hat specialists, Hills Hats, a few years ago and learnt about their rich history. It wasn't long until we were hooked.
Hills Hats' story begins in 1875 when Englishman Chas Hill opened Hill and Sons, Men’s Hatters on Wellington’s Lambton Quay.

Chas knew his hats. He had worked in the business in his home city of Bristol before setting out for the other side of the world. He travelled via Australia to Auckland looking for the ideal place to open a hatter’s shop. A savvy businessman, Chas quickly realised that as the seat of government Wellington was where he would find the majority of elite hat wearers.

The business flourished. By 1890 Chas had added another two shops to his business, in Napier and Nelson. He made his own hats as well as representing major companies from around the world. His advertising announced “We are in receipt of regular shipments of Hats from the following High-Class Makers: Christy and Co., Stetson and Co., Tress and Co…”

When he retired Chas’ son and later his grandson took over the reins. Over the following decades the business expanded to make an ever-growing range of headwear including fashion, outdoor, and uniform hats and berets.

Over the last decade there has been something of a hat revolution. People have fallen in love with hats all over again. Hills Hats has been at the forefront of that movement, encouraging people to come back to the hat as everyday wear.

We love hats. With our solid tradition, our design and engineering expertise, the best hats around are designed and made here – since 1875.

Browse our range of Hills Hats

 

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