Yes I am aware that most people would not consider “THE TILLEY HAT” a fashion item, nor in turn would they consider the complete product line a fashion line…
HOWEVER, it is one of those products, like the majority of the others you find listed under the “OUR OWN” category, created here in CANADA, BY A CANADIAN, to solve a problem, and through time and experimentation, it has become a timeless classic recognized the world over.
The “TILLEY ENDURABLE” began life in the hands of ALEX TILLEY, who wanted something perfect…
But there was still something missing. I couldn’t find a cotton sailing hat in keeping with the quality of my lovely sloop. Sailors need hats and there wasn’t a good-enough one anywhere. Realizing that others besides myself needed one too, I decided, in January 1980, to oversee the making of a proper one.
Three months later we had prototypes that my family and I could test on a sailing charter in Belize, and a couple of months after that we had succeeded in making some that we could attach our name to. By and by we were providing Tilley Hats to people who would drive to our home in suburban Toronto.
How did they first hear about them? I had traded some Hats for an ad in “Gam,” a Canadian sailing magazine. And that fall, “Yachting” magazine gave us a third of a page editorial (I had sent the editor a Hat). Within a year we were selling Tilley Hats at boat shows throughout North America – sometimes selling them in the hundreds!
“ODE TO THE TILLEY HAT” / ALEX TILLEY
…and some thirty plus years later, the hat endures! Alex Tilley took the same inventiveness in creating a pant that functioned and looked good. One thing lead to another…A CANADIAN SUCCESS STORY!
For the complete story on that hat, and more, visit the website: