Friday, January 4, 2013

My Hats for Kickstarter Project is LIVE! My Manifesto to the Blogosphere

my project.
My Kickstarter project ends 11 January 2013 and I am asking for your help by supporting the Tonya Gross Millinery Hat Collection for Kickstarter Project here:

my story.
I am a Chicago-based designer, recently selected by online retailer for its 2013 Emerging Designer Program.  Beginning March 2013, my hat collection will be sold and prominently featured by  I launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund this collection for, and appealing to the blogosphere to help me draw attention to this new partnership with and my Kickstarter project.

my goal.
This is a dream I have worked towards since leaving Chicago-based hedge fund, Citadel Investment Group.  Yes, from hedge fund to head wear! 
Hat on Regina Taylor by Tonya Gross Millinery
Regina Taylor, Chicago Magazine's 2012 Chicagoan of the Year, wearing Tonya Gross Millinery hat
"The opportunity to present my line of hats to such an esteemed buying team, and for my product to be seen by millions of’s customers, is a boon for my hat business and welcomed attention for the US hat industry. This is a unique venture in that I will produce handmade, ready-to-wear hats for a large volume online retailer that are locally produced and plan to hire a talented pool of pattern makers, stitchers, and design assistants drawn from the Chicago fashion industry; I am really proud of this.  But, I need your help to produce this collection and have launched a Kickstarter project to help fund this collection for"

new training programs and jobs with a manufacturing start-up in Chicago.
I believe this is significant to the Chicago fashion community for a number of reasons:  
  • By producing this collection for, I am essentially productionizing couture and ready-to-wear head wear that will be made exclusively in Chicago.
  • My hope is to carry on the tradition of millinery in Chicago, much like BesBen, Raymond Hudd and Mr John before me, employ talented individuals drawn from the Chicago fashion industry, train them in traditional millinery methods, and produce locally.  
  • This is about a large online retailer taking a chance on a small business, rather than importing from a business that mass-produces outside of the US, and also bringing quality couture and ready-to-wear head wear en masse, online.  
  • And, yes, absolutely thrilled for the opportunities this affords me and my business with this distinction (and the US head wear industry!) as a Emerging Designer.   
The press release for my new partnership with on PRWeb:


+Citadel Investment Group
+Tonya Gross Millinery
+Kinzie Industrial Corridor
+Near West Side Chicago
+Chicago magazine 
+Chicago Mayor's Office 

1 comment:

Alec Farwell said...

Inspiring post and story of yours...