Need Help with Hats, Please

Discussion in 'PUBLIC Vintage Fashion Q & A' started by vintagebaubles, Oct 24, 2009.

  1. vintagebaubles

    vintagebaubles Trade Member

    Am drowning in hats and must start getting them listed... I love 'em. but still am uncertain about many of them (despite ongoing effort). I'm trying to get these three listed this weekend, and could use some confirmation of dating and what their correct style terms are. Sorry for all the pics, but want to be thorough. Thanks!

    1) Clueless about either a date or what to call it, but it's one of my faves. Claude Saint-Cyr repro. Looks for all the world like a structured, peaked-top Alpine-style hat, but the (ostrich?) feathers (which have sequins sprinkled throughout) make it more for dressier wear, I'd guess. 40s, 50s, 60s?

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    2) This is 40s, right? And would it just be called a structured, brimmed cap? Also, the feathers at the front are "normal" feathers, but the deeper-colored ones are incredibly soft. Anyone know what type of feather this might be? Would you call this "claret" or "wine" in color? And last, is this on the head form right? I think I've seen these in movies being worn further back on the head, but it didn't look right that way. It is meant to be offset at the brim, though.

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    3) A 40's toque with knotted accent? "Original Roberta Bernay" label.

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  2. lkranieri

    lkranieri Trade Member

    Re your third hat (I haven't really looked at the first two yet), I think you will agree that it looks very much like this 1953 hat. Note, too, that the milliner's name is apparently Roberta BernayS (flip the label over to see the 's')
     
  3. lkranieri

    lkranieri Trade Member

    Re your first hat, a 1954 article stated:

    "Now you can buy a Paris hat whether you live in the corn belt or the sequin sector. A group of 50 Paris originals have been designed by 16 members of the French Haute Couture for reproduction in the American wholesale market, in time for holiday wear.

    A joint showing of American and French holiday hat styles, staged recently in New York, highlights festive little hats of pastel satins, chiffons, and velvets, trimmed with posies, sequins, and jewels. Many open-crown effects were shown and silhouettes varied from deep turbans and cloches to tiny caps of beanie variety.

    French milliners represented in the show included: Albouy, Simone Cange, Claude Saint-Cyr, Legroux Soeurs, Maude et Nano, Gilbert Orcel, Paulette, Rebous, Svend, Rose Valois, Jean Patou, Jane Blanchot, Christian Dior, Jacques Fath, Balenciaga, and Hubert de Givenchy."


    A 1957 article stated:

    "The only French designer who helps to dress the Queen of England is hatmaker Claude Saint-Cyr. She probably owes the honor to being what the French call "sage" or sensible.

    But Madame Saint-Cyr, a tall, statuesque brunette of 45, thinks that a new hat should be worn for a month and then discarded. Even her hats, which cost an average of $60 each.

    "Some hats," she says, "the eccentric ones, are finished after an hour."...

    ...Among other Saint-Cyr clients are the Duchess of Windsor, the Begum Aga Khan, Mrs. Averell Harriman, French movie queen Martine (??) Carol, Hollywood's Eleanor Parker, Queen Soroya of Iran, the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret, in addition to numerous American tourists..."
     
  4. vintagebaubles

    vintagebaubles Trade Member

    Many thanks, Lynne! Wow, that first article really nails the Bernays hat (my label does have the "s"; thanks for the tip)!

    I could not find anything on Saint-Cyr, other than more hat listings. This is wonderful information (not to be copied, I know!). $60 for a hat back then must have been really pricey!
     
  5. lkranieri

    lkranieri Trade Member

    You are most welcome Anne and here is a little more about Saint-Cyr, from the 1957 article mentioned in my last post:

    "In her Fauborg St. Honore Salons, where she has been installed for 20 years...

    Madame Saint-Cyr is the wife of interior decorator Georges Martin, and mother of an 11-year-old daughter, Christine. She likes art and exhibitions, collects paintings, and loves cooking and gardening at her country home. A Parisian by birth, she did a two-year unpaid stint as an apprentice milliner, starting at 18. Later she worked for several noted Paris hatters, among them Patou and Rose Descat, before setting up on her own.

    Royal dressmaker Norman Hartnell chose her to do his hats just before the coronation. She has no ambitions to branch out to New York explaining: "I already have enough to do with shops in Paris and London.""
     

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