Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Millinery Trends of 1958-1959

My last Millinery Trends for the 1950s!

The Australian Women's Weekly, 26 March 1958

The March 26th issue of AWW has a special on Paris hats. After the small hat focus in 52-54 and the shift to larger proportioned hats in 56-67, there seems to be a healthy mix in fashion in 1958.

The Australian Women's Weekly, 26 March 1958

This fairly small hat, covered in white flowers, is from Guy Laroche. That shape and the total flower coverage I'm starting to see as the definition of late 50s and early 60s hats, but it has a soft elegant feel that links it firmly to 50s style.

The Australian Women's Weekly, 26 March 1958

Here we get a bit more out there with Dior, with this red basketwork hat. In a coolie-hat shape but with such a rough and open texture. I love how this hat looks, but I'm not sure how well it would translate to real-life wearing. If you had the confidence, it would be a show-stopper. The article also reports that all shades of red will be big for Spring and Summer in 1958.

The Australian Women's Weekly, 26 March 1958

If you are after something more practical, how timeless is this hat? I could comfortably wear this to any manner of picnic, barbeque or pool party, or out to the beach or around the garden! I'm not sure I'm a "matched to my ensemble" kind of gal, but I know it could be a stunning look that way.

The Australian Women's Weekly, 26 March 1958

As well as the current Northern hemisphere Spring trends, the issue looks at styles suitable for Autumn, mostly evening styles, with lots of turbans and whimsies. If you are after a project, keep an eye out for these ring-style bases. I bought a box of vintage hats (I'll be showing you later, don't worry) to fix up, and it included a number of this style, but without the trims. I think they'd be the kind of thing you could pick up cheaply, and then adding and veil and flower would be very easy!

The Australian Women's Weekly, 26 March 1958

Two more glamorous evening looks for Autumn. For the most part, we keep seeing small and simple styles for late-day and evening, leaving the big and bright statement hats for day.

The Australian Women's Weekly, 9 July 1958

This Orcel hat, for our "mid-season" wardrobe is described as a "mob cap". If you said "a mob cap made of veil" I don't think anyone would be very enticed by that description, but the picture tells a very different story. I adore this one!

Plus I stand behind this quote from the article:

"You can have almost any kind of hat - a cloche, turban, sailor, beret, tall-crowned fez - but you must have a hat."

The Australian Women's Weekly, 17 September 1958

I had to share this image from a Kayser commercial. The theme is the "One-Color Look" that you can achieve with "nylons, slips, panties and gloves" to match the rest of your outfit. I might change my mind on super-matchy outfits!

The Australian Women's Weekly, 12 November 1958

I had to include these for their entertainment value. Made from real flowers, leaves, fruits and vegetables and shown at the Red Cross Chelsea Flower Show, they still show suuch distinctive 1950s style! The hat on the left is made from the leaves and berries of a custard apple tree, and sprayed with hair lacquer. On the right is a sparterie base covered with shallot and brussel sprout leaves and trimmed with a range of small veggies.

The Australian Women's Weekly, 4 March 1959

The Autumn Fashion Report declares 1959 to be "The year of the colored suit", with models in red, pink, blue, brown and purple. It certainly doesn't look set to be "the year of the hat" with millinery barely rating a mention, and absent from a number of outfits. Although some beautiful hats are shown, they are not described in the captions.

The Australian Women's Weekly, 1 April 1959

In April, however, we are loving our milliners again, with a cute little article on a young Mr Smith leaving London to become head milliner at Lanvin. While winning over top clients, he keeps doing his bit in the workroom when required and remains a shy young man. Awwww.

And there is no question that hats are still an important fashion etiquette issue. The July 15 issue of AWW reports that the first female M.P. in the South Australian Legislative Assembly, Mrs. Wilfred Steele, had a big decision to make in setting the "Hat or no hat" precedent. In the end she wore a small, closely-fitted turban that matched the blue in her suit.

Then, as now, Melbourne Cup time brings out the hat-lover in many Australian women who otherwise never go near a hat, but I've left out the racing fashion reports to cover at another time.

I'm nearing the end of my 1950s focus, with just a couple more of my hats to show you! Of course I'll be back to the 1950s in the future, including some milliner-spotlights I've been planning for a long time. I'll be picking up the Hats of the Past series early next year with the 1940s!

I'd love to hear what you love most about 1940s hats so I can make sure I explore the best bits! Do you have a favourite 1940s style or designer?

10 comments:

  1. Great overview of trends, as usual. This series is so inspiring to me, although at this point I have neither the money nor the room for more hats...
    I haven't purchased one yet, but I've been really keeping my eyes peeled for a 40s bonnet style hat. They're a bit on the costumey side for me, but they're so pretty, and I find them weirdly flattering.

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    1. Glad you are enjoying it! I also get drawn to some looks that I'm not sure would really work without being over the top or costumey, but they are sometimes just too gorgeous (and flattering) to resist.

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  2. Very cute I really hats with face veils but have yet to try one. I tend to go more for the 1920s through 40s when it comes to vintage but some 50s stuff is really neat.

    retro rover

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    1. Veils are so much fun! I hope you enjoy my 1940s exploration when I get to it!

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  3. Goodness, these are sublime! One thing I've always loved about the late 50s is the abundance of colour at play in the fashion (and makeup, for that matter) world - and not just on the "junior crowd", but on ladies in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and so on. I think it would have been an exciting, fantastic time to be alive if you were a fashionista, very much including to load up on some of the gorgeous hat styles seen in this wonderful post (I adore the 1st and 3rd ones soooo much!!!).

    ♥ Jessica

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    1. I find it a very inspiring era for colour, even though I am usually very drawn to neutrals myself. It's good for me to go in new directions!

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  4. I have really enjoyed this series, looking forward to your 1940's one. My favourites here are the two evening hats for autumn.

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    1. Thank you! I'm looking forward to it too :)

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  5. I love the look on the face of the model wearing the brussel sprout hat... As if she's wondering how she ended up with THIS one.

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    1. I know, right? It's a precious face :) I think I'd feel the same!

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