Grad Opens Up a Hat Store


Baby, take off your coat, your shoes, whatever — but if you’ve shopped at Billy Thomson’s downtown store, you can definitely leave your hat on. Your hat, after all, may be the best part of your outfit. From Ed Hardy (grafitti) hats to Castro-style headwear and stylish new versions of everything from cowboy to drivers’ caps, Thomson’s Headquarterz can cater to just about anyone who wants to leave his or her hat on.

The 28-year-old entrepreneur opened Headquarterz five years ago, after returning from business management school at Ryerson University in Toronto. “In Toronto you can buy any kind of hat. I would buy a lot of hats there at these Big-It-Up kiosks in the mall, and when I came home I noticed the only thing you could really get were team hats,” says Thomson, whose parents Billy and Diane own the Scots Corner.

He looked into opening a Big-it-Up franchise in a London mall, but costs to rent kiosks were too high for the recent grad, he says. “So I found this place, which is better for business — it’s a great location,” he says. To keep things exclusive, Thomson says he only carries four of every hat — which can run from $10 to $225.

Image via Mellahaney

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