Los Angeles-based milliner Nick Fouquet has taken inspiration from his travel experiences across the globe to produce a range of seasonal collections that cater to style-savvy connoisseurs and eco-conscious consumers alike.
Who is Nick Fouquet?
Nick Fouquet is part human, part animal. French with a Huck Finn spirit. Part Native American and part psychedelic adventurer. And I will always be a gentleman.
They say style is cyclical; are hats making a coming back?
Yes, hats are having a strong moment within the accessories world. I think the wide brim and high crown hats are what’s in vogue and to me, they’re the best-looking shapes; I’ve always gravitated towards this style.
How did you start making hats?
I honestly did not know hat making was my thing. I didn’t know what my thing was. It found me. I graduated with a BA in Environmental Science and Sustainable Development. My future was looking more like forestry or a recluse in the high mountains of Colorado as a field worker. I had always identified with colours, design, and natural aesthetics, which I derived from my travels and working for other designers and ultimately implemented into my work.
Describe the first hat you saw.
It was a hat from a company called Motsch in Paris that Hermes bought. It was a beautiful black felt hat my step-mother got me. I loved its brim width and quality. I could tell it was a good hat.
Who or what is your biggest inspiration?
Travel, gutter punks, Tom Sawyer, Keith Richards, The Sappeurs in the Congo, my Dad’s style, and love.
How have hat styles been changing throughout the ages? Which one is your favourite?
Honestly, they haven’t changed much. I think the shapes are still really the same in a lot of ways, and what we’ve been doing is to make them a little more modern and fun. A classic shape or style will never go out of style.
Your pieces are made with sustainably-harvested beaver fur felt; why did you choose this material and how important is sustainability?
I went to school for environmental science and sustainable development. For me, sustainability is the key to all our ecological problems. It’s about properly using our current resources without compromising the needs of the future. In terms of clothing, it’s about using the best quality, so customers don’t need to rebuy. To me, that’s ‘sustainable fashion’.
What’s one thing that you do to make your hats unique?
There are a lot of things, from the quality of felts we use, which is the best, the embroidered liners and the high-quality leather, to the boxes, the shapes, the accoutrements and distressing. We use a lot of elements that make a Nick Fouquet hat what it is.
What makes you happy?
When I realize I’m in the moment of something…
What is the sexiest way to wear a hat?
What kind of hats should we be wearing in 2017?
Wide brim, high crown, and good quality;)
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