Not Just a Hat Stand – William Chambers – Milliner

Having only been in business since 2007, William Chambers has already been nominated at the Scottish Fashion Awards 2008, won the Creative 30 competition and featured in The List’s Style Issue as one of the hottest young designers in the country. They said:

“While the likes of Christopher Kane are swanning about Milan, we need equally brilliant talents like William Chambers, whose hats have been everywhere from Elle to Vogue, as well as on numerous celebrity heads, this year to keep the home fires stoked with creativity…”

Not bad eh? Here’s a little insight into Williams world and his pieces…PLUS a never heard before exclusive – read on!

Black Large

Felt Flower with Veiling

Orange Spray

Pheasant Feather

Pink Flower

White Bow
All photographs courtesy of Niall Walker

How would you describe your designs/hats?

If I had to sum it up I would say, ‘Chic, forward-thinking millinery for the woman who has – or wants to look like she has – effortless style’. The Coco Chanels of the 21st century if you like.

What made you decide to become a milliner and how long have you been in business?

Hats are an amazing accessory, they say a whole lot more than, say, an ‘It bag’ does. A hat can change someone’s whole look and mood; it can draw something out of them that’s not normally seen. That’s what I find interesting and it’s probably why hats are big again – women want to stand out and look different. That‘s what drew me to start designing and making hats in 2007.

What price range are your pieces?

My headpiece prices range from £80 to £300 and my hats £150 to £500. This is a rough guide as the price all depends on what materials are used and how long it takes to create the piece.

You have made some wonderful pieces that have been worn by certain well-known names such as the gorgeous Rosin Murphy. If you had to make a very special bespoke piece, who would it be for and why?

Someone like Carla Bruni or Cate Blanchett, as they are naturally beautiful, chic and elegant.

What piece would you like to see worn to which race meeting, and who would you like to see wearing it?

Royal Ascot is the main race meeting of the season and I have had one of my hats worn in the Royal enclosure, which was a thrill. I would love to create something for someone like model Erin O’Connor to wear at Ascot. She exudes elegance and effortless style. I don’t know which piece it would be, as my hats are designed bespoke for the client, but I’d ensure it was both magical and outstanding, without being silly or comical, as that’s not my style.

Tell us one thing about yourself that people might not know?

Your readers can be the first to know that I’m launching my first men’s headwear collection this spring!

What’s your next piece/collection like? What’s the inspiration?

With my new collection I looked back to 1950s couture for the detailing. There are lots of feathers used which I love working with to create drama and exuberance..

Then lastly, but most importantly, where can we buy your pieces?

All my pieces are handmade for the customer, so if you require a bespoke piece you can have a consultation in my Glasgow City centre studio. For customers who can’t make it to Glasgow I can consult via email and phone.

I have recently launched my online shop offering select pieces from my collections, visit to see if there’s anything you fancy for your next race meeting!

WILLIAM CHAMBERS MILLINERY is at 180 West Regent Street, Glasgow G2 4RW (Appointment only). Tel: 07815 096 367. Web:


If you require a bespoke piece for your special occasion or for anything else, please email me!



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