Otis James is much more than a hat maker; despite his gift and love for making hats, his favorite part of the process is meeting and interacting with people. There hasn't been an instance when I was in his shop and a regular customer didn't stop by to pick up an order or say hi. When I sat down to talk with Otis he expanded on this. He explained that he found something romantic about custom made goods -being able to go into a shop and shake hands with the person who was going to be making your clothes. More than that, he wanted there to be a direct line between maker and customers, so that if there were ever any issue, they would have the comfort and security of being able to come in and bring any issue before him.
When you are looking to buy a hat from Otis, the process starts with a conversation: through getting to know his client better, he can better point them in the direction of what they are looking for. From there, he takes your measurements and gets to work. His diligent process of creating a hat that is custom made from size to color to style is a unique process that beacons to a time of more human interaction and less mass production.
This personal style of production seems to be the only kind that fits Otis. Each time I come to the shop, I end up happily staying longer than I had planned, and I end up having more substantial conversations than I usually do. The hats that Otis creates are beautifully designed, and there is a noticeably higher level of quality over that of his peers. I am confident that is because his authentic love for intricately making each hat unique for its owner.
You can check out his products here.