Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Trove Pattern Project - A 1930 "Smart Little Turban"

The earliest vintage hat pattern I have so far used is this turban from 1930. I keep thinking of it as 1920s, and it almost is, but we can probably all agree it is at least in a very 20s style. I've seen other very similar patterns shared on Pinterest, but this one is from my great-great-grandfather's favourite newspaper to write letters to, the Brisbane Courier, from the 7th of August, 1930. You can access the original article here.

I think it is designed to be tied on and arranged each time you wear it, but I've chosen to sew the draping in place so it is ready to go. I'm not sure this is the best option but it works.

Materials

You can use either stretch or woven material, a piece at least 16 by 60 inches. If you are sewing it in place as I did, stretch is best. Your choice of fabric will naturally be determined by whether you intend to wear it for "theatre and restaurant wear in the evening" or for "motoring and sports wear during the daylight hours".

Pattern

As always, they don't have all the measurements you might want, but it was certainly enough to work from. The first one I made (the green) was a little small for my 22-22.5 inch head. It does fit, but doesn't sit where I'd like and the fabric stretch is needed. On a friend with a 21 inch head, this size was perfect. For my second attempt (pink), I added an inch or two to the length and width of the rectangle, and an inch or two around the curved edge too. This is a much better fit, but still on the small side, especially as my hair has grown longer.

Making

I sewed this turban by hand, as instructed. It was a good in-front-of-the-TV task and didn't take too long. After getting the arrangement how I wanted on the mannequin, I hand stitched it into place at a few points. The instructions were relatively straightforward, and the draping diagrams were actually quite helpful! I'm not completely clear on the different ways they suggest tucking the various bits, but since they assure me that this way, with the ends twisted across the top, is the most flattering to the older woman, that's all I need to know, right? I'm told it adds dignity, and will provide balance for "the somewhat heavier outline of the average matron." Hmmm. 

Wearing

If you are good with tying head wraps and scarves, it might suit you better to make the turban and tie it each time. For me, sewing it up seemed like the better option. Still, it requires adjusting when you put it on, and if you were using a non-stretch fabric I imagine that you would want to tie it each time. It's a pretty easy-to-wear item either way, and great for bad hair days/weeks/years. I also like the smooth front section as a place to add a bit of bling, in the form of a hat pin or brooch.

What do you think of this one? And would you prefer to wear it motoring or to the theatre?
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16 comments

  1. I like it! It does look very 20's to me, but I guess that 1930 doesn't mean that the calendar page flipped over and suddenly they were into 1930's styles ;)
    Thanks for sharing your "how to". I've been wanting to make a turban and have been very unsure of how to do it. . .

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    1. The 30s do seem very transitional to me, and definitely still clinging to the 20s look for the little while.

      I'm glad you found it helpful!

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  2. It's an interesting pattern - I like the front section as you say for brooch pinning. I really like turbans but not yet found a style that suits. X

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    1. I could see you in this style - it has a bit of an Agatha Christie villainess/siren look to it :P

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  3. Ooo, I love your second one. I was thinking of a red one too, so this has inspired me. I really need to get round to actually buying the fabric as I never ever buy stretch. Thanks for the tips on making it a little bigger as I need to do that too! xx

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  4. While not my style for a hat/turban I think it's cute and would be perfect for motoring. That hat is going nowhere :)

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  5. AH, depending on fabric, I'd use it for either! I like the style although I don't know if it would work on me with my large ears.

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    1. Maybe that's the problem I'm having with it!!

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  6. That turban is lovely. The color is gorgeous. Thanks for sharing.
    Marion and Marilyn

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  7. This heavier outlined matron would wear it motoring. Where else?!

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    1. Hehe. Well, I personally have no time to go to the theatre, so I suppose it's motoring for me too!

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