Tom, Founder Shappos.com, 2012
Tom grew up in the back room of his parents' Hat Shop in London's Covent Garden in the 1980's. He would do his school homework to the sounds of customers and cash registers. He spent his summers in Italy visiting majestic old hat factories with his Dad.
Hats are a part of his history, and it is a family passion now two generations old.
Tetyana is a Ukrainian that grew up in New York. She has written and photographed for fashion magazines, and has previously helped run an accessories website in New York.
The Hat Shop, 58 Neal Street (1983)
The idea for Shappos.com first came a few years ago when the family was in Paris celebrating mum Carole's 60th birthday. It was a 50s themed birthday dinner with family, as well as some friends from the hat business. The evening was fun, and full of talk about hats and fashion. Later that evening Tom, who had been considering launching a retail business, had a lightbulb moment. He wanted to try and create a hat retail company which brought together stylish and accessible headwear with a fresh and efficient retail approach.
An evening in Paris: Tetyana, Tom and Alice
Dinner: Tom and Tetyana with Anthony Peto, Sandrine Bourg
Once back in London Tom and Tetyana began developing the idea. The more they looked at the market they saw it was essentially divided in half: Either an over-supply of poor design and cheaply made imports, or the bespoke, couture-fashion pieces, with intimidating design and scary prices.
They strongly believed that the era of disposable fashion had passed. Since the recession, fashion buyers had become far more discerning and creative about their purchases. Today’s buyers are looking for more durable designs and durable quality; styles that will last and can easily be worn season after season.
Fast forward to 2012, and the idea started to become a reality. They finalised the business plan, identified the launch stock and set about assembling a design and technology team to create the Shappos store. Along with a team of hard-working creative thinkers Shappos.com became reality.
Shappos.com wants to bring hat retail properly into the digital age and bring back the simplicity and joy of buying and wearing a great hat. The modern version of everyone's favourite "chapeaux".
We believe that everyone should own at least one great hat, we believe that that great design doesn't always have to have a designer price tag and we believe that online retail can still have the feel of a boutique business.
We want you to be happy with your Shappos.com experience. We also encourage you to participate in our development, tell us what you think and help us shape the future of Shappos.com to be a great retail community.
Thanks for your custom and continuing to make us the best little hat shop on the web.