When a young Kelly Morgan threaded a piece of ribbon through a paper plate she had decorated with lemons, and declared she had designed her very own hat, she had no idea that, some 20 years later she would be starting her very own millinery business.

The moment was duly documented on a Polaroid image, and stuffed into a drawer, but the memory resurfaced when Kelly rediscovered her love of hats while studying Costume and Performance Design at Arts University Bournemouth.

"Through costume we started making hats," she explained. "I was really excited when the situation came up You put your bid in for what you want - 'I want this project, this is my second'. The first one I did was for a 1940s flash dance and I loved it. One of the projects was to work on the panto in Oxford, so I made three pieces for that. I loved that and I've made for three pantos now, in Poole."

Having already completed a course in fine art (as well as one in psychology), Kelly felt she had finally found her path.

"I always thought it might be something that I was interested in," she admits, recounting another memory of a conversation with a relative asking what she wanted to do with her life.

"I said 'I could really see myself being an old woman and having a hat shop'," she smiles.

"I never in my wildest dreams would think I would be here. It's too serendipitous."

As well as creating her own collection, Kelly now works with clients on bespoke hats – an aspect of her work that she particularly enjoys.

"I like to collaborate with someone, otherwise I feel like I'm just making the hat for me," she explains.

"Give me a dress and I'm like 'I can do this and this and this'. I told a couple of people if they bring me two garments, I will make one hat for two garments. Because I want you to wear it more than once."

Kelly, who is also passionate about corsetry and making tailored corsets, admits that creating her collection has been a huge learning curve, and she is slowing finding her signature style.

"I love hats because they're super sculpted. It's a bit like fine art, responding to materials. I have a very strong vintage or historical aesthetic because I'm very interested in that, because there's such a rich history in hats," she says. "I really love big pill box hats and I like to work with vintage materials – it's so much more fun that way.

"I don't like mass production, so I really want to focus on limited quantities.

"I'm still learning, it's organic. I'm inspired constantly, so that's been interesting."

Kelly, whose creations range from £100 to £400-plus, is already making a name for herself, with one of her hats being selected for London Hat Week at the beginning of April.

"You definitely have those "oh my gosh" moments, but you also get a bit nervous that everything is going to fall apart," she says.

"That's also been really interesting – your mindset. I think that's one of the biggest things that can stop you. How do I get better with the materials, with the products – better, faster? How do I also strengthen my mindset?

"I'm learning so many things about millinery and so many things about myself. It's a lot of growth and it's a little scary.

"Because it's what I love, it needs to be what I talk about to anybody and everybody. I just hope that other people talk about it too."