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Polly Singer is an internationally renowned designer of ladies hats.
Polly grew up in Georgetown, Kentucky, and graduated from Hollins College in Roanoke, Virginia. After college she moved to New York City and began a career in the music industry, working at both Radio City Music Hall and EMI Records. She later moved to Premier Talent Agency where she helped promote tours for some of the industry’s biggest acts, including The Pretenders, Van Halen, and U2.
Singer designed her first hat in 1993, while recuperating from a broken foot. Living in a 5th floor walkup on New York’s Upper East Side and having nothing else to occupy her time, she soon fell in love with combining different materials and trims. When a good friend suggested she attend FIT, she jumped at the chance. Polly studied at New York’s famed Fashion Institute of Technology, where she learned to create one-of-a-kind hats by hand, much as milliners of the 19th century did. She soon fell in love with hat design and would often make hats until the wee hours of the morning. After receiving her certificate in Millinery Design, Polly interned for fellow hat designer Patricia Underwood in the late 1990s. While working with Patricia, Polly helped design hats that appeared in several Hollywood feature films, including Austin Powers and Speed 2.
Polly started her internet-based company – Polly Singer, Couture Hats and Veils – in 2003. Polly’s style is a mix of Bluegrass tradition and New York elegance. Always having been a fan of Audrey Hepburn’s classic and timeless elegance, Polly’s designs harken back to the days of classic elegance. Working by hand with only the finest materials, Polly regards each of her ladies hats as an individual work of art. Clients come from all over the world to work with Polly in her studio. Clients leave with a hat customized to work with their outfits. The beauty of Polly’s creations is that everything is hand sewn, which enables hats to be re-done for the client.
This talented milliner has been recognized for her achievement in the field of hat design. In 2003, her hat Matisse won “Best of Show” at TLD Designer Center in Westmont, Illinois. And in 2006 her hat Go for the Green won the “Hats off to Keeneland” award in Lexington, Kentucky. In addition, Polly’s creations have been exhibited throughout the United States, at venues such as Louisville’s Museum of Art and Design and New York’s American Craft Museum. Her hats have brought thousands of dollars for charities. Most recently, a Polly Singer Custom Design brought $5,000 at auction for Angel Heart Farm, which specializes in equine assisted therapy for children battling chronic and life threatening issues.
Polly is always featured in the national press. Articles about her hats worn to the Kentucky Derby and her unique style have appeared in magazines and newspapers such as The Wall Street Journal, People, USA Today, Victoria, Southern Lady, Tea Times and Kentucky Monthly. In addition, Polly’s hats have been featured on several national television programs, including ABC’s: The View and Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. Numerous celebrities and members of the racing elite have been photographed wearing her designs. Quite often, many of her hats end up in the Winner’s Circle at the Kentucky Derby.
Polly Singer makes her home in the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky. Polly’s ancestors have lived in Central Kentucky for over seven generations, having lived on land given to the family by Patrick Henry for service in the Revolutionary War.
Please note that Polly Singer Couture Hats and Veils is not affiliated with Churchill Downs or the Kentucky Derby.