Friday, 25 July 2014

Millinery Trends of 1952 - 1954

I had a lot of fun with my post on Millinery Trends of the early 1950s, and only got up to 1952, so I want to travel a little further with this post. There were many images and quotes to choose from, but here are some of my favourites. I am saving some for an upcoming collection of millinery tips and hat-wearing advice as well as some pattern reviews.

Let's begin (not at the beginning) with The Western Mail reporting on September 11 1952 that:

"Parisians can pack half a dozen hats into a paper bag this summer...The head-pieces are so small they are almost non-existent. Skull-caps, pill-boxes, mushroom-berets or high, cone-shaped crowns - anything goes so long as it is small and untrimmed except for an occasional feather or heavy mesh veil."

Small and minimally trimmed is the main trend I've seen in all the articles and photos I've read from these years.

Australian Women's Weekly 27 February 1952

Back in February of that year, I take you to an Australian Women's Weekly spread on Paris and London new season fashions and hats. It says that many bright colours are out of fashion in London due to court mourning, and although the text focuses on dresses, the photos mostly feature hats, such as the one above, with this caption:

"Hats in Paris this spring are mostly half hats, and many are little more than ornaments. This ornament hat in black velvet curled in horn shapes mounted on gold braid is by Fernand Aubry."

They may be little more than ornaments, but what an ornament! An unusual but elegant hat, in my book.

Australian Women's Weekly 27 February 1952

The same issue, says that "The New Hat Silhouette is Varied".

The black hat above is from Dior, a "head-hugging velvet bonnet" finished with two tassels. The blue is from "Svend" in velour. Also mentioned - "Jacques Heim's collection includes a number of hat and muff sets." Further justifying the matching hat and muff suggestions for my snow leopard fur situation!

The blue below is from Madame Vernier in turquoise felt with black grosgrain ribbon band and black feathers at the back. I have an aqua blue felt that just arrived last week and now is calling to me to become a version of this hat.

Australian Women's Weekly 27 February 1952

Below is a Lilly Dache hat demonstrating the trend for white hats.

"Presenting the luminous white hat, so exactly right, as a forerunner to autumn. The silhouettes are fresh yet sophisticated. Veils are worn in new ways, with one purpose - to make you look prettier."

Australian Women's Weekly 5 March 1952

Below is the a hat from the cover of AWW in August of 1952. Tax time! The magazine's editorial says:

"And - although the voice of the Federal Treasurer is heard in the land - a young woman's fancy seriously turns to a new spring hat."

"Any day from now nearly every woman will discover that the cost of living is not so bad that she can't afford to run up a printed cotton at home. And the best thing to do when your head is full of taxation figures and budget calculations is to put a new hat on it."

Australian Women's Weekly 13 August 1952
This issue includes a spring fashion supplement reporting that "Accents are feminine". This circlet of flowers below is "for late-day or evening wear" and it "is designed to be pinned to the back of the coiffure and fitted like a cap."

Australian Women's Weekly 13 August 1952

The February 11, 1953 AWW quotes an American millinery retailer, Mr. Max Hess, who says that men need to be educated about women's hats. Through their ignorance of hat fashions, and conservative tastes, many thousands in hat sales are lost each year. However, he does suggest they act as a restraint on the whims of designers, who would take things too far without this restriction.

"So, all in all, it is just as well that somewhere in the background there are always men who say, "If you wear that thing it won't be with me.""

On April 22, AWW shows new hat sketches, including this cap of white satin.

"Autumn hat silhouettes call for a new hair shape because they just cover or only partially cover the hair, rarely extending beyond the hairline. In place of the boyish haircut is a halo-like coiffure which frames the face softly and leaves the back hairline neat and chic."

Australian Women's Weekly 22 April 1953

In the July 15, 1953 issue, the magazine reports about a new Dior trend:

"Dior's new cap made from clusters of berries and fruits look newer than the flower cap that has been a successful piece of millinery flattery for several seaons. The new fruit cap is designed with a widow's-peak point on the forehead."

A fruit hat is something that is on my to-make list. My eye is always caught by vintage millinery trims in the form of fruit, which often come up on etsy or ebay, but I'd also like to try and make my own.

Australian Women's Weekly, January 13, 1954

Hats, apparently, would continue be small in 1954, with the exception of the coolie, a gorgeous example of which is shown above. I always think of the fashion parade in "How to Marry a Millionaire" when I think of 1950s coolie hats.

On February 7, 1954, the Sun Herald's hat fashion advice was all about pillboxes "with a difference" that would be a top item for 1954. "They will be shallow, worn very far forward, made of rich materials, and often trimmed to glitter."

Australian Women's Weekly March 3 1954

Above is an evening cap of rose satin in petal shapes with a silk rose and green leaves. "Like numbers of Paris hats, the model is designed to show the coiffure."

This is a big theme of the year's hat fashions. "The milliners of Paris have pared down autumn hats to chic little shapes designed to complement a short-cut coiffure. The hats are worn in a new way to expose the hair becomingly - at the sides, back and often the hairline."


Australian Women's Weekly March 3 1954
In a way, the hat fashions seem a lot more focused in the 1952-1954 period than in 1950-1951. Hats are mostly small, although the shapes vary. Half-hats/skull-caps are popular, but still take on a range of looks from their fabrics, colours and trims. Trims vary, but are often understated, or at least kept to one standout feature trim. The small size of that hats allows hairstyles to be shown off, especially shorter hair with cute curls at the front and at the neck.

How do you like the trends of this period? And which of these delicious hats would you dream of adding to your closet?

14 comments:

  1. Awesome post, once again. I find that now that I've got a pixie cut, a lot of my hats don't work as well because they're meant to be worn with longer or fuller hair than I have or am able to create. The little bit of instruction about what kind of do is meant to be worn with a specific kind of hat is actually really helpful in figuring out how to wear them again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I'm so glad it was useful to you.

      Delete
  2. The hat with 'horns' is definitely my favourite! But I'm looking forward to seeing the results re the aqua hat. This has beautiful lines. Every time I read your posts I am inspired to put on a hat to wear to work (although as Wales has been unusually sunny and hot this week my pink Jacaru has been the 'go to' hat for practicality's sake). Must think of a way to glam it up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will have to work out what to block it on, but I'm sure something around here can be used to make that shape!

      Glad you are feeling hat inspired!

      Delete
  3. I always think of How to Marry a Millionaire when I see coolie hats too! I love all of the hats with poms and tassels. I have a white hat with a big ostrich feather tassel and although its certainly one of my sillier hats, I do love it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I remember you posting a picture with that hat and I loved it too, despite its silliness! I could handle having one like the green in the last picture. Something else to get on to!

      Delete
  4. Im usually more into the 1920s through 40s where hats are concerned but some 50s are just too gorgeous. I love these illustrations

    retro rover

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do love vintage fashion illustrations for themselves as well as the designs they show. Some are just so beautifully done!

      Delete
  5. Is it any surprise that my very favourite in the one with the pair of slender (white?) feathers protruding from the back? :) Really though, I adore each and every one of these terrifically lovely mid-50s hats. There are lingering elements of late 40s design in some of them and at the same time, hints of what was to lay ahead as the decade wore on and shapes like platters and bucket hats became especially popular.

    Fabulous second post in this series. I eagerly look forward to the third! :)

    ♥ Jessica

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is an amazing hat and a stunning photo to show it off as well. I am finding it fascinating to immerse myself in this section of fashion history, and I'm glad others are enjoying it too!

      Delete
  6. The black Dior with the tassels and the white Lily Dache are my favourites, so dramatic!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The dramatic looks are really something, for sure. I think that the Dior hat is this one: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/266064290460956524/ at the Met website, although it says 1953. They do such good illustrations that I often find a photo of the same hat on Pinterest and recognise it!

      Delete
  7. These are just beautiful, some lovely illustrations. I would like the Dior velvet bonnet please!

    ReplyDelete