January 16, 2019

40 Stunning Photos of 1950s Beauties Wearing Unique Hats Designed by Emme and Adolfo

Ethel Price started in the millinery business in the mid 1920s, training for five years at Bruck-Weiss, a New York millinery firm. Sometime in the 1930s, Emme went into business with two women partners whose first names were Mildred and Evie – they put their initials together and came up with the company’s name “Emme Hats”. Founded as a custom order salon, the company hired 22 year old Cuban-born Adolfo Sardinas as their leading designer in 1952.

1950s beauties wearing hats designed by Emme and Adolfo

By 1961, Emme hats had grown to include a line of wholesale hats for department stores as well as a budget line ‘Emme Boutique’ alongside their high-end custom orders. Adolfo and Ethel parted ways in early 1962 over design credit on the Emme label. Adolfo opened his own millinery the next year and within a few years had transformed his business into dressmaking, become a well known New York designer of Chanel style tweed suits and glamorous evening gowns. Before retiring in 1993, one of Adolfo’s most loyal customers had been Nancy Reagan.

After Adolfo left Emme in 1962 Ethel Price hired Anello, an Italian milliner, as head designer. Emme remained a popular millinery but hat sales were plummeting in the 1960s. In 1970, Ethel Price retired from the business and closed Emme hats. Ethel Price died in 1987 at the age of 85.

These stunning photos from Sophia that show classic beauties wearing unique hats designed by Emme and Adolfo in the 1950s.

Cherry Nelms and Jean Patchett in wrinkle-resistant Celanese acetate suits by Handmacher's Weathervanes, hats by Emme, photo by Richard Rutledge, Vogue, April 15, 1954

Dovima in cotton-silk dress by Adele Simpson, hat by Emme, pearl jewelry by David Webb, photo by John Rawlings, Vogue, April 1, 1954

Jean Patchett in flowered silk shirt of African daisies embroidered on dotted white silk, orange silk shantung skirt, matching banded hat by Emme, photo by Irving Penn, Vogue, June 1954

Anne St. Marie in coral suit with wrapped jacket and released skirt by Swansdown, planter's hat by Emme, photo by Richard Avedon, Harper's Bazaar, February 1955

Evelyn Tripp in stitched collar suit of lightweight Palm Beach cloth by Sacony, turban hat by Emme, 1955



Liz Pringle in floral print silk twill dress and jacket by Mollie Parnis, baby cap with same print cartwheel by Emme, photo by Richard Avedon, April 1955

Mary Jane Russell in yellow velour cap by Adolfo of Emme, bracelet, ring and earrings, September 1955

Anne St. Marie in white Arnel sharkskin suit with red piping by Handmacher, hat by Adolfo of Emme, photo by Lillian Bassman, Harper's Bazaar, May 1956

Carmen in peony-pink silk print dress with fichu-collar by Galanos, hat by Emme, photo by Lillian Bassman, Harper's Bazaar, May 1956

Dovima in beige lightweight wool suit with flare-pleated skirt, by Ben Zuckerman, flowered silk turban by Adolfo of Emme, photo by Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Harper's Bazaar, March 1956

Evelyn Tripp (r) and Joan Friedman in dresses by Mollie Parnis and flowered hats by Adolfo of Emme, photo by Karen Radkai, Vogue, April 15, 1956

Sunny Harnett in beige and white wool tweed coat to match the sheath underneath, hat by Emme, handbag by Milch, photo by Roger Prigent, Vogue, February 15, 1956

Sunny Harnett in pale silk and wool tissue tweed dress with string-tie belt by B.H. Wragge, hat by Emme, handbag by Lucille, photo by John Rawlings, Vogue, March 1, 1956

Suzy Parker in tailored Worumbo flannel suit by Harry Frechtel, flowered turban by Adolfo of Emme, saddlebag carryall by MacArthur, photo by Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Harper's Bazaar, March 1956

Jessica Ford in chiffon-throated sheath dress and short cropped jacket of beige and white rayon tweed by Lilli Ann, white felt hat by Emme, photo by Karen Radkai, Vogue, February 15, 1957

Jessica Ford in pin-tucked organdy and lace dress by Herbert Levine, hat by Adolfo for Emme, photo by Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Harper's Bazaar, May 1957

Joan Friedman in navy suit with matching bag and hat with red brim by Emme, photo by Horst, Vogue, February 15, 1957

Joanna McCormick in cotton plaid sea-suit by Claire McCardell, man-eating hat by Adolfo of Emme, photo by Richard Rutledge in the Virgin Islands, Vogue, January 1, 1957

Lucinda Hollingsworth in cape-suit of red and white herringbone tweed worn with white silk chiffon blouse by Talmack, felt hat by Emme, photo by Frances McLaughlin-Gill, Vogue, March 1, 1957

Lucinda Hollingsworth is wearing a blue hat by Adolfo of Emme, make-up from Elizabeth Arden, jewelry by David Webb, photo by Karen Radkai, Vogue, April 15, 1957

Model in feathery blue and white worsted tweed with short cropped jacket by Brigance for Fonde, cloche by Adolfo of Emme, photo by Lillian Bassman, Harper's Bazaar, February 1957

Romaine Simenson in belted, brass-buttoned wool suit accented with white collar and cuffs by George Carmel, hat by Emme, photo by Karen Radkai, Vogue, March 15, 1957

Sunny Harnett in bell-tunic suit of plum and black colored tweed by Traina-Norell, plum colored satin hat by Emme, photo by Irving Penn, Vogue, September 1, 1957

Anne St. Marie in brilliant blue linen dress and jacket by Ben Barrack, turban by Emme, Koret handbag, David Webb earrings, photo by Karen Radkai, Vogue, April 15, 1958

Jessica Ford in Spring-green wool coat by Ben Zuckerman, a silk wrapped turban in complimentary colors by Adolfo of Emme, photo by Frances McLaughlin-Gill, Vogue, January 1, 1958

Joanna McCormick in orange wool suit with silk-looking grain by Dan Millstein, hat by Emme, Vera scarf, photo by Henry Clarke, Vogue, March 15, 1958

Lucinda Hollingsworth in a Royal Palm orchid suit of Wyner's Sag-No-Mor wool jersey by Ben Reig, beret by Emme, Vogue, January 1, 1958

Mary McLaughlin in blue Strong-Hewat wool tweed suit with striped knit cotton jersey blouse and jacket lining, twirled silk turban by Emme, photo by henry Clarke, Vogue, February 1, 1958

Renée Breton in airy tweed coat of red lilac by Ben Zuckerman, off-white cloche by Emme, photo by Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Harper's Bazaar, February 1958

Carmen in smoky charcoal suit of British wool tweed, tunic jacket is collarless and belted in black kidskin by Ben Zuckerman, hat by Emme, photo by Saul Leiter, Harper's Bazaar, September 1959

China Machado, make-up by Elizabeth Arden, hat by Emme, earrings by Cartier, photo by Richard Avedon, Harper's Bazaar, February 1959

Evelyn Tripp in purple Forstmann's wool smock-suit by Tiffeau-Busch, hat by Emme, shoes by Evins, photo by William Bell, Vogue, January 1, 1959

Isabella Albonico in beautiful blue suit of Italian silk twill by Marquise, SAGA Norwegian fox stole by Fredrica, silk flower hat by Emme, photo by Irving Penn, Vogue, March 1, 1959

Jessica Ford in salmon-colored wool tweed suit by Handmacher, natural Milan straw hat by Emme, photo by Leombruno-Bodi, Vogue, February 15, 1959

Joanna McCormick in pepper-green wool coat with slightly higher waistline by Dan Millstein, hat by Emme, photo by William Bell, Vogue, January 1, 1959

Lucinda in two-jacket suit in almond green, wool tweed overjacket reverses to nutria, hat by Emme, Tiffany jewels, photo by Karen Radkai, Vogue, August 15, 1959

Ruth Neuman Derujinsky in dinner suit of orange and yellow velveteen, matching cone hat by Emme, photo by Gleb Derujinsky, Harper's Bazaar, April 1959

Sara Thom in hat of pale orange feathers to look like silk by Adolfo of Emme, worn with tweed coat and a Verdura brooch, photo by Henry Clarke, Vogue, 1959

Simone in smoky gray Anglo wool suit lined in Persian lamb over a wool jersey blouse by Monte Sano & Pruzan, Persian lamb hat by Emme, photo by Saul Leiter, Harper's Bazaar, September 1959

Suzy Parker in white and cerise check wool smock coat and dress by Traina-Norell, cerise turban by Emme, photo by Richard Avedon, Harper's Bazaar, March 1959





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