Paris Kyne
Master Milliner

Paris Kyne

portrait Paris Kyne was born Michael Francis Kyne, the middle of five children, in Chelsea Bush Nursing Hospital, Victoria, Australia. His father was a 'blind man', specialising in canvas awnings. His mother had to bring up five children under the age of 14 when her husband died.

The school years of the young Michael were rather ordinary, taught by the Sisters of Sion nuns at primary school and the Marist Brothers in secondary school. Even the males around him as a child all wore long black dresses.

Amateur theatre kept his mind active, first as Louis in the Maffra Dramatic Society's production of "The King and I", then onto countless stage shows playing everything from a Russian boy being introduced to a prostitute, to the March Hare. It was here that Michael learned to love an audience and the feedback they gave.

After failing year 11 badly, and a brief foray into hairdressing, Michael left Sale for the big temptations of Melbourne. Mind numbing job followed mind numbing job - forklift operator, newsagent and produce worker. It was during this produce job he found an advertisement in a local paper for a hat blocker. "A hat blocker would get to play with fabric - sounds like fun to me."

This job lasted from 1988 to 1990 and was with Melbourne Hats, then located in collingwood. "A hat blocker, basically blocks hats, but here I learnt to manipulate fibres. Every type of fibre and every type of weave moves differently. You are required to know your fibre and weave breakdown to manipulate the hood into the required shape. This takes years of practice but the end result is stunning."

From here Michael was offered a job with the late great William Beale of 'Mr Individual' fame. Mr Beale was re-opening his business after some time in retirement, under the name 'Ultrastyle by William Beale'. This was Micheal's first job as a milliner and he quickly worked his way up to 'head of the table'. Mr Beale died in January 1992 and Michael was given the job of finishing off the wholesale orders, client orders and to close the business and sell everything off. This of course put him in the perfect position yo buy the Beale hat block collection of about 400 blocks, adding to his own collection of about 100.

Whilst at Melbourne Hats and Ultrastyle, Michael studied fashion at what was then Broadmeadows College of TAFE at night school, concentrating on textiles, design, business management and, of course, millinery.

With the unexpected departure of Micheal's well-respected employer, he was in the fortunate position of being offered a number of jobs within the industry from which to choose. Michael finally chose the position of Artistic director at Martin Penner International, located in Flinders Lane, and still under the ownership of Martin Penner himself. This deal lasted from March 1992 until August 1993 which was as long as both Michael and Penner could work together without one of them killing the other, and as Michael did not wish to be around for the death of a second employer, he moved on.

Paris in 2005 Paris in 1994 Paris in 1994 Paris in 1994

Paris Kyne For those of you who wish to know more about Paris, below is a list of his 29 favourite things:

  • Animal – Aardvark
  • Australian Artist – Graeme Base (The Eleventh Hour, The Discovery of Dragons) In 2008 Paris acquired the original artwork for Mongolian Screamers, from Discovery of Dragons, and has since acquired three other Graeme Base originals.
  • Bridge – Story Bridge, Brisbane Australia
  • Cathedral – The Sagrada Familia by Anton Gaudi, Barcelona Spain
  • French Town – Nancy in the Lorraine Provence
  • Garden – Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne Australia
  • Gate – The Dragon Gate, Guell Pavillions by Anton Gaudi, Barcelona Spain
  • Hotel – Evropa Wenceslas Square, Prague Chech Republic
  • Lake – Woolf Lake – Wisconsin America
  • Musuem Collection – Musée Les Arts Décoratifes, Paris France
  • Musuem Exterior – The New Metropolis by Rinzo Piano, Amsterdam Holland
  • Musical – Tanz der Vampire by Jim Steinman and Michael Kunze
  • Mythological Creature – The Hydra
  • Opera – Pique Dame (The Queen of Spades) by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
  • Painting – A Sunday Afternoon on the Grande Jatte by George Seurat now on permanent display in the Art Institute of Chicago
  • Pedestrian Bridge – Pont Du Arts, Paris France
  • Period of Fashion – New Romance, England 1975 – 1981
  • Play - Summer of the 17th Doll by Ray Lawler
  • Performer (Female) - Grace Jones
  • Performer (Male) - Leigh Bowery
  • Roller Coaster – Space Mountain, Mission 2, Disneyland, Paris France
  • Room within a museum – The Fouquet jewellery shop by Alphones Mucha, both interior and exterior (1900) within the Musée Carnavalet, Paris France
  • Shop – Memoirs, Waif City, Dubai United Arab Emirates
  • Staircase – The Grand Staircase, Opera Garnier, Paris France
  • Textile Museum – Textilmesuem, St Gallen Switzerland
  • Theme Park – Disneyland, California America
  • Train Station – Stadelhofen, Zurich Switzerland
  • Walking Track within a city – The Tan, Melbourne Australia
  • Walking track just out of a city - Duck Reach Power Station, Launceston Australia

Momba group - Paris Molley Meldrum Kate Cebrano