Newcastle Common Artist: Holly Johnson

Holly Johnson

Newcastle Common Artist: Holly Johnson

Holly Johnson is a local hatmaker, trading under the name Hojo Hattery where she sells her art and shares her creative process through video tutorials. She creates custom felt hats from scratch using the traditional practice of ‘Felt Blocking’ – an art with a rich history in Newcastle-under-Lyme, going back to the 17th century.

For this Newcastle Common Artist Residency, Holly will be researching the history of hat-making and Millinery in Newcastle-under-Lyme and appealing for photos, stories or memories from local residents, business owners or those whose families have grown up in the area. She will use these images and experiences as inspiration to create 3 pieces of headwear – these will be 2 classic styles that people have worn over the years in the town, and one contemporary style that will be embellished with designs inspired by Newcastle-under-Lyme. This process and the results will be documented and showcased via video tutorials and a live stream from a local shop window.

Holly’s videos

 #1: Share your memories of Newcastle-under-Lyme



#2: There’s still time to share your memories



#3: The hat styles have been chosen!



#4: Shaping and blocking



#5: Embellishments and finishing touches



Holly’s livestream can be seen on our Facebook page


Learn more





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