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Click through to peek inside Satya Twena's historic hat factory—and to see how a bespoke hat is made, from start to finish!
In Satya's front showroom, dozens of stunning hats sit on display.
Believe it or not, nearly every hat starts from this same basic shape—a floppy, wide-brimmed style. Upon entering the factory, I was greeted with stacks and stacks of them in every possible hue.
When she purchased the factory, Satya also acquired 2,000 of these hand-carved wooden hat blocks; to make a hat, the designer fits one of the basic wide-brimmed styles seen before over a specific block and then shapes it using heat.
After tightly tying off parts of the hat to create the various bends and folds, it's vigorously steamed to soften the material and set the new shape. After that, it goes into a special oven to bake for five to 10 minutes.
Voila—a perfectly-shaped fedora. After a quick trip to the heated hat stretcher to ensure a perfect fit, the excess material is carefully sheared off the bottom. Then, it's time to pick the trimmings.
But with so many gorgeous ribbons to choose from, it's hard to narrow it down!
A bold blue, we decide, would look striking as the hat's inside band. (Satya's a fan of using bright, cheery hues on the inside of her hats—sort of like the wearer's own little secret.)
It's stitching time.
For the outside band, I choose to go a subtler route with a charcoal grey grosgrain ribbon.
No fedora's complete without a jaunty side bow!
OK, this place just might make a hat girl out of me.