A designer offers a tip of the hat.


A skeptic agreed to try on one of Jamie Slye’s hats, even as the customer swore she was not a hat person. The moment the crown touched her head, though, her demeanor changed. She stood a little straighter. And she purchased the hat.

Slye ’06, who majored in fashion merchandising and design at Virginia Tech, launched Jamie Slye Hats and Accessories in Austin in 2012. Featured in British Vogue, her designs mix modern fashion with a vintage flair, hinting back to her roots in the Shenandoah Valley.

She attributes her success to the people skills she learned in college. “There is value in building authentic and honest relationships with people,” she says. “I love helping people find their inner confidence. The hat is merely the vehicle to find it.”

Written by Leslie King