Thursday, May 05, 2011

Consider Your Hairdo When Choosing a Vintage Hat

If you like to wear vintage hats like I do, you'll want to consider how the hat looks with your hairdo.  As hat styles changed over the years, so did coiffures.  In the 40s, when victory rolls were popular, tiny "doll" hats were worn tipped to the front or the side to accent the hairstyle.  In general, hats work best with short hair or up dos.  The photos below are all from 1951 and show how hair can be styled to complement a particular hat. 

Neat curls at the top and sleek sides in a hairdo by Dimitri.  The black wool dress with asymmetric neckline is by Jacques Fath for Joseph Halpert

A small shallow pillbox hat by Mr. John is worn slightly tipped to the side and covers the curls at the top of the head.  Note how the short hair allows the large mantle collar of Pauline Trigere's coat to frame the face.

Here, longer hair is worn brushed back from the face and curled at ear level.  The Hadley cashmere sweater is accented with a beaded choker necklace.

A green bonnet by Chanda fits beautifully over the hairstyle and the face veil slips right over the curls.  Gray flannel suit by Alan Graham.

Medium length hair is swept to the side in a dramatic curl.  Hairdo by Enrico Caruso.  Silk dress by Claire McCardell.

This dramatic hat by Braagaard is worn tilted to the side to show off the sideswept curls.  See how that works?  Black velvet dinner dress by Maurice Rentner.


Val said...

Very nice post. I was just thinking about this a couple of weeks ago. I'd been growing my hair out for the last couple of years, only to realize that now that it was shoulder length, it did not look right with the vintage hats from the 50s and 60s that I like to wear. Thus, last Friday's hair cut! It's now back to a shorter style, which will work much better with those pill boxes!

Jenifir said...

While I agree that hats tend to work better with short or up do hair I am pleased to see younger woman like the Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge wearing them with her hair down. I think that it will help to encourage young woman to wear hats more often. Hats became less important in the 60's when it all was about the hair so maybe there will be a truce. In the past, I would always wear my hair up with all but large brimmed hats or berets but I have been wearing pill boxes with my hair down and I have positive feed back so it must be working!
I love all three of these hats!

Kori said...

This is adorable!

By the way--have you heard that my 1st novel is being released on tomorrow?! Check it out on my blog! Have a wonderful Cinco De Mayo honey! Kori xoxo

Mad Scientist said...

I've found that short hair can often be unflattering/helpful for wearing hats, whereas when I had exceedingly long hair which was generally tied back in a plait, they seemed to go better and also gave me more options.

deang said...

It's good that you also note that shorter or upswept hair helps highlight collar and shoulder details of the clothes. It seems like most 50s models had long necks in addition to short or upswept hair, which helped separate hat mass from collar/shoulder mass. The problem with long hair and hats is that the hair obscures both the hat and any interesting collar or shoulder treatments.

Very few hat styles look good with long, natural hairstyles. The only hats that survived that trend in the 70s were soft, floppy, pseudo-30s picture hats, soft fedoras, and soft, traditional berets. More structured or small hats just don't work with long, luxuriant hair, even if you're royalty.

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