Haute Hats

Teressa Foglia Brings Her Designs to the River Oaks District

Foglia shares why Houston is her first Texas location.

By Danielle Wright

Founder and designer Teressa Foglia posing inside the River Oaks District brick-and-mortar.

As you dust off your western boots in excitement for the rodeo, is your roundup complete without a cowboy hat? While the traditional accessory may be an instant thought, a sassier style has arrived in Houston. California-native Teressa Foglia introduces her eclectic hat design to River Oaks District, offering a refreshing take on the underrated statement piece.  

The journey of Foglia began in 2016 after completing a hat-making course during a trip to Europe. "I was looking for master's programs to get a student visa, to stay in Europe longer, and I took the hat-making course for fun," Foglia tells Houstonia. "I loved being there, and the class just happened to be available around the same time, and the stars aligned. I felt alive after the course."

Foglia opened her first studio in Brooklyn's Industry City in New York the following year. Today, the eponymous brand has cemented itself with retail locations in Malibu, Tennessee, Palm Springs, and Houston to showcase her Bespoke hats while offering clients complete creative control to customize their own. 

"I'm so excited. I could cry," Foglia exclaims. The River Oaks location opened in late January and is a carefully crafted oasis for the person who loves the swanky accessory. "[Houston] is our biggest market for what we're doing. Texans have been wearing hats most of their lives, so they have a different confidence level compared to our other locations. River Oaks is taking the brand to a different space. I love the elevation that we feel being in this community."

From the saddlebags at Dior to diamonds at Cartier, the lavish shopping center is dedicated to those ready to splurge on something new for their wardrobe. Teressa Foglia's neighbor is Frances Valentine, another New York City-based designer that moved in last July. 

Sketches are drawn by business partner Ty Hayes.

After hauling the large glass doors to enter the showroom, a serene, vacation-like bliss takes over from the sandy walls to the cabana seats. An overflow of Bespoke hats surrounds the store, providing shoppers with a customized selection of products. Guests can gaze at abstract art by business partner Ty Hayes, dainty jewelry, and the brand's latest Artisan  Atelier Collection, which varies in shape and design. 

Sustainability is imperative to the brand and Foglia. The fabrics she uses are first-rate second-hand materials sourced from different world regions to local flea and antique markets. The designer also prides herself on being a zero-waste company and donates their "fab scrap" fabrics to local schools.

"I think sustainability means a lot of different things as a business owner beyond just the fabrics that you're using," Foglia exclaims. "How are you taking care of your artisans that are also a huge part of your supply chain? There are so many different components to the sustainability aspect that I think that you have to be mindful of what you're doing in business."

The "Houston" hat by Teressa Foglia. 

The new location displays promising success in River Oaks, with several shoppers visiting the store in its first month open. Soon to come, Teressa Foglia will carry additional accessories and its online apparel collection

"The gals that are coming in that are getting hats from us allow us to have a lot of creative freedom, you know, they're not scared, they're looking for bold colors and centric designs. The style is so good here, the shopping is amazing, and I look forward to getting to know Houston."

For more information on Teressa Foglia, visit online or in-store. Located at 4444 Westheimer Rd Suite E135.

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