R.I. Milliner Creates, Sells Hats To Hollywood Movie Production

Photo: WBZ NewsRadio / Kim Tunnicliffe

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WBZ NewsRadio) — The work of a milliner from Rhode Island has attracted the attention of some big names in Hollywood, as they commission some of her work for upcoming movie productions.

Elsie Collins of Pawtucket, R.I. said that she's been making women's headwear since she was a child.

"My mom was a master dress maker, so I had my first toy sewing machine when I was ten. I had all the scraps that fell from my mother's sewing machine and took to it like a fish in water," Collins said.

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Her life's work commitment paid off as Collins' store, ThistleCottageStudio on Etsy, impressed costume designers on the The Color Purple so much that they bought four of her wide brim hats for the film. The Color Purple, set to be released next year, is being produced by talent such as Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg.

Collins was overjoyed at the purchases and said that she bets the hats will be for a church scene, as the hats sold were "Sunday best" style clothes.

"I thought 'oh my God,' my hats are going to be in the film- not in a school play. It was either a stroke of dumb luck or karmic wonderfulness," Collins said. Collins said that she makes the hats right out of her apartment in Pawtucket.

WBZ's Kim Tunnicliffe (@KimWBZ) reports.

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