Meeka Robinson (Shelby Stephens)

Mother-daughter duo Sonja Robinson and Meeka Robinson have served Los Angeles for over 35 years with their signature hat designs and exceptional customer service. One Of A Kind Hats is a full-service boutique that offers cleaning, blocking, restyling, and repairs. What started as a business catered to affluent churchgoers, has now evolved into a community staple dedicated to the Black fashion experience. The brand has expanded to handbags, shoes, jewelry, scarves, gloves, eyewear, caps, hatpins, a full line of furs, and specialty knit clothing. All the perfect additions to execute a look centered around the star of the show, the crown.

During a recent interview with the L.A. Sentinel, Robinson is coming from behind the scenes into the spotlight to share her journey as a stylist and entrepreneur, the history of Black milliners, and how One Of A Kind Hats has been able to adapt in the fashion industry. Robinson herself wears many hats as a mother, daughter, designer, and business owner, but as the leader of her family’s legacy and generations of tradition, she wears that hat with pride and honor.

From a young age, Robinson worked at her mother’s shop on Crenshaw Blvd. where she learned the trade of millinery. In 1996 she revamped the brand and opened her first store in the Fox Hills Mall. Sonja Robinson was in business for 40 years. She was a buyer for Broadway and the manager of the accessory department. During that time she fell in love with hats and started her business surrounding the passion. Millinery is the art of hat creation. Style inevitably reflects time and Black designers have been present in making history across the world. Robinson took a great interest in her mother’s work and advanced the brand to keep this tradition alive.

Related Links:

One of a Kind Hat Store Owners Are Serving the Crenshaw Area – Los Angeles Sentinel (

Meet Meeka Robinson Davis | Second Generation Black Milliner, Designer, Entrepreneur, and Store Owner – SHOUTOUT LA

One of a Kind Hats Stuns at Urban Pose Fashion Show – VSEDC

One Of A Kind Store (Shelby Stephens)

“To me this doesn’t feel like a job but a way I can express creativity in beauty through my work. I enjoy letting my customers tell me what they want, something that they can’t go into a store and find but I can create and produce the product that they have in mind. It brings so much enjoyment and beauty to a person’s life and it builds lifelong customers. I love when people can show their true character through hats.”

One Of A Kind Hats have been featured in movies like “Kingdom Come,” and “Big Momma’s House,” Harper’s Bazaar Magazine, The Grammy MuseumNetflix’s Family Reunion, Peacock’s Bel Air, KTLA 5 News, Facebook’s Buy Black Campaign, Love and Hip-Hop Hollywood, The Spiderwick Chronicles, TMZ’s South of Wilshire, Disney’s ‘The Descendants’ and many more.

Their accolades and awards include the Pauline Award-Business Woman of the Year, AT&T Business Profile of the Year, Letter of Recognition from President Bill Clinton, Proclamations for Community and City Service from the L.A. Mayor’s Office, and State Senate and County of Los Angeles. Celebrity clients include Patti LaBelle, Tyra Banks, Nancy Wilson, Faith Evans, Vivica Fox, Victoria Rowell, Lisa Raye, Loretta Devine, Thelma Hopkins, Lillie Knauls, Bishop Magic Don Juan, and Socialite Mrs. Burnstyn of Beverly Hills.

One Of A Kind Hats Model (Courtesy Photo)

As a Black woman navigating the fashion world, Meeka Robinson took risks and broke barriers for a more welcoming and inclusive industry. She believes being consistent and persistent are keys to longevity. Her sentiments for working outside the box and being different has kept her ahead of the curve. Robison has adapted alongside her business to keep One Of A Kind significant.

“If you don’t do anything different, you’ll get left behind. Right now, the trend is the internet and we’re an in-person, brick-and-motor, and we’re used to giving customers that personal attention with maybe placement of a hat, or recommendations on what looks good on them. We’ve always specialized in those areas and with the internet we have to be just as attractive online.”

Robinson has fully embraced the new ways that One Of A Kind can interact with customers online. Celebrities and influencers alike have commissioned Robinson to bring their ideas to life. Dual roles online and in-person have kept her excited and inspired to continue her artistry. During the pandemic she got clever and began hosting virtual fashion shows where she paired outfits and accessories with fashion forward head pieces. “I have a lot of fun doing virtual shows. During the pandemic I would host a show every three months at the change of season. The shows were entertaining and made people who never thought about wearing a hat, want to wear a hat.”

Meeka Robinson (Shelby Stephens)

Robinson’s fashion shows are expected to resume in Fall of 2024. Within the next five years she plans to create her own line of one of a kind fashion designs that are exclusive in style but inclusive in accessibility. Robison’s flare for detail, tenacious spirit, and dedication to the craft, makes her a notable and honorable milliner.

All One Of A Kind designs are available for order and can be tailored to specific head sizes. Ready to wear pieces are also available at the Slauson location 4432 W Slauson Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90043.  For custom inquiries, please contact 323-296-0130.