About L&C

About Lillie and CohoeAbout Lillie & Cohoe

In 1990, Liz Cohoe left behind a 20-year career in Fashion Design to settle with her family in the town of Nelson, British Columbia. Looking for a niche in the secluded town, Cohoe recognized that many people had good ideas for the apparel industry but lacked training experience. She started a product development company called The Patternworks.

Meanwhile, Lamourah Perron was creating women’s hats and selling them at craft shows. Perron noticed that her designs evoked an inner awareness in women; however, she needed assistance with production planning, costing, pattern and sample making in order to get her business off the ground. Cohoe provided that technical expertise and although The Patternworks thrived, she missed the creativity of design work. Lamourah, realizing that her strengths lay in customer relations, asked Liz to join her as a partner. They divided duties into what each woman did best, thus bringing their unique skills, creativity and enthusiasm to the resurgence of women’s hats.

Over the next decade, Perron and Cohoe built their company through wholesale and retail sales, agent representation, web presence and personal presentations. They paid careful attention to women’s reactions to the hats, and it is this awareness that had made Lillie & Cohoe so successful.

In 2005, Liz Cohoe, now sole owner and designer of Lillie & Cohoe, moved production into a 1930’s warehouse in the heart of Nelson. The airy studio-showroom, located far from the pressures of metropolitan life, allows Cohoe to freely explore design ideas and create hats that stand apart from the mainstream. All women are beautiful and Cohoe understands that the proper colour, texture, shape and volume can highlight a woman’s best feature. “I was exhibiting in Calgary on year,” recounts Cohoe, “when two women approached my display. They both wanted to try on hats, but one was reluctant – she felt that she was too plain, that hats looked bad on her. I suggested a couple of styles and after trying on the second hat, the woman stood there silently. Then she turned to her friend, and whispered ‘I’m beautiful’. They both had tears in their eyes.”

Despite the seclusion of Nelson, Cohoe is able to stay abreast of the industry through media and city visits. The Lillie & Cohoe collection is available at fine retail locations across Canada and the United States.