Why Hats: How
Genis Whylan redefined
hat-making with unique
In the world of fashion, individuality and style often take center stage. Genis Whylan, the designer and owner of Why Hats, has carved a unique approach in hat-making. In this exclusive interview, he shared his remarkable journey, shedding light on his passion for hat-making, the challenges he faced, and his unconventional style.
Discovering the art of hat making
Genis Whylan's journey began in a small town nestled in the mountains of Barcelona, Spain. His love for hats ignited early in life, but in Spain, finding the kind of hats he envisioned was a daunting task. He recalls, “I always had a lot of passion for wearing hats, but in Spain, it's so difficult to find nice fedora hats like the one I'm wearing.”
It was during his time in Ibiza that he crossed paths with the hat maker named Curro Coronel, whose eccentric pirate-style hats made Genis realize that he could create hats himself. He set out to make hats with minimal resources. “I was with no money, just 200 euros in my pocket and I just got a table, a second hand iron and a few felt,” he recalled.
His initial attempts at hat-making were far from perfect, “The first hats were nothing, it was everything but not hats.” However, with the support of friends who believed in his vision, Genis embarked on a journey of self-discovery and creative evolution.
“Some mistakes actually made the perfection. That's what I call my world: Sometimes imperfection makes perfection. ”
Crafting a unique style
Hat-making is often closely guarded, with few artisans willing to share their techniques. Genis had to rely on his own resourcefulness and determination to learn the art. He stated, “I just discovered the world of hat making not by a big guru but by making hats myself. That's how I learned, and that's the way I created my own technique.”
Five years into his hat-making venture, Genis reflects on the lessons learned, “I learned from my failures and from my errors. Some mistakes actually made the perfection. That's what I sometimes call my world. Sometimes imperfection makes perfection.”
Genis's technique may be unconventional, but it's undeniably unique. He doesn't shy away from unconventional methods, such as spray-painting the hats. This unique approach emerged from a client's request for a green hat when he lacked the necessary material. In improvisation, Genis found his distinctive style, characterized by distressed aesthetics and unique shades.
He explains the evolution of his style, saying, "People that find me, they want that kind of style—like distressed, you know, some shades." This commitment to uniqueness is so strong that he refuses to create classic hats, asserting, "When someone comes to me and they ask me for a classic hat, I say no. I don't have classic hats."
The power of personal connection
The early days of Why Hats were marked by humble beginnings, with close friends purchasing his hats. Over time, Genis expanded his clientele by embodying his brand. As he explains, "If you believe in something, just wear it, and people will want it because you wear it like you know what you're wearing."
This personal touch extends to his social media presence. Why Hats' Instagram feed is a glimpse into his workshop and his lifestyle. He and his wife are the faces of their brand, showcasing their lifestyle and values through Instagram, where they connect with clients on a personal level.
Returning customers are a testament to the appeal of Why Hats. Genis's observation that hats have an addictive quality resonates with his clients, with many building collections for both everyday wear and special occasions.
“When you have an appointment, you can see it directly, send a message to that person or cancel, change the time, it's super simple. ”
Streamlining appointment booking with Vev
Genis discovered the Vev platform when he needed a way to manage appointments with clients during a trip to the United States. He found Vev through a simple Google search and was impressed by its ease of use. He noted, “I found other ones who were asking for money for, like, I don't know what. I didn't understand why. And then I found Vev, and it was super simple.”
Vev's user-friendly interface made it easy for both Genis and his customers to book appointments. “The first time I put it on my Instagram stories and I got a lot of appointments. People were texting me, ‘Hey, how can we meet in LA?’. I sent the link directly and they booked it by themselves,” he remarks.
He appreciated how minimal information was required from clients, making the booking process easy and straightforward. He emphasized, “It's cool because when you have an appointment, you can see it directly, send a message to that person or cancel, change the time, it's super simple.”
“Imagine you can pass walking on the street and you see a guy making some fire. That's what I love. ”
A bright future: Expanding to the United States
Looking ahead, Genis envisions expanding his business further, with plans to open a unique shop that doubles as a workshop, allowing passersby to witness the craft of hat-making firsthand. As he puts it, “Imagine you can pass walking on the street and you see a guy making some fire. That's what I love.”
He recognizes the potential in the U.S. market, where a significant portion of his customers resides, and his passion for music continues to complement his thriving hat-making venture.
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