As we all know, history repeats itself, and fashion especially. Nothing is ever “new” on the runway (well, maybe if it’s a suit made out of bubble wrap, etc.), and this was true of past designers as well. Today in the Battle of Fashion we have headgear of the 1780s facing off against that of the c. 1910s (and a little earlier).
|Fashion plate from Dames a La Mode; 1905 Hat from The Met|
I noticed the similarities in these two periods while finding inspiration for a Titanic Day hat of my own. The lampshade brims and the large “muffin top” crowns I was looking at for 1912 were so reminiscent of the monstro-bonnets of my favorite decade of dress, the 1780s.
|Dames a la Mode; 1910 hat from The Met|
Doesn’t it seem logical that one hat could do both jobs? The black silk on the right, above, with the addition of some tall feathers, could surely time travel back to the 1780s, especially with that giant, snazzy buckle and bow.
|Dames a la Mode; BartosCollection.com|
It’s a well-known fact that the Edwardians took chapeau inspiration from the 18th century – the “Gainsborough,” for instance – but I didn’t realize the Merry Widow also derived from this period.
|Dames a la Mode; 1910s hat by Hess|
So what do you think? Which period does it better? It’s hard to trump the outlandishly awesome style of the 1780s, but the Edwardians were pretty sharply dressed, too. Which one has your vote?
*Fashion plates were found at Dames a la Mode on Tumblr – great resource!