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January 25, 2017

New Edwardian Hat Fashions: 66 Beautiful Vintage Studio Photos of Women Posing With Hats from the Early 20th Century

Hats during the Edwardian period were not as universally wide as is sometimes thought. The new century began with a continuation of art nouveau influence in fashion and as skirts swirled around the feet of women forming in fans like bell flowers, so did the hats swirl and swoop around the head.

In the early Edwardian period it was fashionable for a lady’s silhouette to resemble an S-shape. The hat was an essential element. It was worn on top of piled up hair and positioned to cantilever over the face. This curvaceous form was carried through the bodice that was pouched over the waist and ended in a trained skirt. Also popular in this era was the ‘toque’, the name given to a brimless hat.

After 1908 the silhouette became more slender. Conversely the hat became increasingly larger. By 1911 hats were at their largest, often with the brim extending beyond the breadth of the wearer’s shoulders. To secure these huge creations to the head, hat pins – sometimes as long as 18 inches – were skewered through the hair and hat. The hatpin had other advantages too. Any man who attempted an unwanted advance soon discovered that a hatpin was all a frail woman needed to defend herself.


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