Tag Archives: millinery supply sources

Copies of Store-Bought Hats, 1917

After encouraging readers to make their own hats in July and September of 1917, in November The Ladies’ Home Journal sent a staff member to buy nine fashionable hats and then make her own copies — and compare the costs.

Article "What I Paid for Some Hats and What I Made Them for at Home." Ladies' Home Journal, Nov. 1917, p. 134.

Article “What I Paid for Some Hats and What I Made Them for at Home.” Ladies’ Home Journal, Nov. 1917, top of page 134.

I have included larger images of all the individual hats, later in this post.

The article does not have a by-line, but readers could address inquiries to the Millinery Editor.

“NOTE — If you would like to learn how to make your own hats, the millinery lessons will help you:  “Hat-Frame Making,” “Covering a Velvet Hat,” and “Trimming a Hat.” They cost ten cents each. Descriptions of the hats pictured on this page and a list of the various articles used and their cost will be mailed upon receipt of four cents in stamps to cover the service. Inclose [sic] a stamped, addressed envelope to the Millinery Editor, The Ladies’ Home Journal, Independence Square, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with your request.”

Presumably, the photos show the originals, not the copies….

Hats bought and copied, Ladies Home Journal, Nov. 1917. Center of page 134.

Hats bought and copied, Ladies Home Journal, Nov. 1917. Center of page 134.

Hats Bought and Made, Ladies Home Journal, Nov. 1917. bottom of page 134.

Hats Bought and Made, Ladies Home Journal, Nov. 1917. bottom of page 134.

The purchased hats cost between $30 and $15.  Making them was cheaper, of course, but the Ladies’ Home Journal made it clear that these store-bought hats were not overpriced:

“You may think, upon comparison of these prices, that the profits of the milliner are overwhelming; but in all fairness to the milliner, the figures which signify the cost at which these hats were copied at home do not include the salaries paid to the high-priced designer and the assistants, nor the wages of the dainty model who so alluringly pictures to you how you will look in the hat [!], or those of the saleswoman who serves you. It does not include the rent for the salon in which you comfortably relax while trying hats on, nor the many other expenses incident to the final delivery of the hat.”

Dover’s Women’s and Children’s Fashions of 1917: The Complete Perry, Dame & Co. Catalog shows eight pages of ready-to-wear hats with loads of trimming; the most expensive is $6.49, and most can be purchased for between two and four dollars.  The Ladies’ Home Journal Millinery Editor must have thought her readers would be impressed by the idea of copying a $25 dollar hat for $5.

Here are larger images of the individual hats.

Toque, $25 in a store, and "a very new shape ... trimmed with gray vulture." $30 in store. LHJ, Nov. 1917.

Toque, $25 in a store, and “a very new shape … trimmed with gray vulture.” $30 in store. LHJ, Nov. 1917.

If you can read the words “trimmed with gray vulture” and not think of Neville Longbottom’s grandmother — or Professor Snape dressed in her clothes — where have you been? The position of the feathers reminds me of a skunk on alert….

Two "tam" style hats for women, Nov. 1917. Ladies' Home Journal.

Two “tam” style hats for women, Nov. 1917. Ladies’ Home Journal.

This hat style, with the brim rolled up on one side, was recommended for “matrons” in July.

Hats with rolled brims, Nov. 1917. Ladies' Home Journal.

The hat on the left is trimmed with a “smart hackle fancy.” Clusters of feathers, sometimes known as hackle pads, can be found online. Here is a large selection of hackles from the Zucker Feather company (a wholesaler.)

The wings on this hat are made of moleskin (a brushed cotton) and velvet — and it cost $12.25 to duplicate at home, more than any of the others.

A hat covered with moleskin and velvet. LHj, Nov. 1917, LHJ.

A hat covered with moleskin and velvet. LHJ, Nov. 1917.

Hats that required special navigational skills — hats which were extremely tall, or extremely wide — were often illustrated. I showed more 1917 hats in a previous post:  click here.

Delineator hat illustrations, May 1917.

Delineator hat illustrations, May 1917.

Delineator hat illustrations, September, 1917.

Delineator hat illustrations, September, 1917.

Hats in Delineator illustrations, May 1917.

Hats in Delineator illustrations, May 1917. Usually a sheer hat would have visible “spokes” supporting the brim.

The hat on the left, below, is quite wide, and has a very high crown, too.

Velvet covered hats, Ladies' Home Journal, Nov. 1917.

Velvet-covered hats, Ladies’ Home Journal, Nov. 1917.

The “rolled quills” are probably long feathers that have been trimmed to have short barbs. This was not a good time to be a bird (or a woman with an aversion to wearing parts of dead animals), although by 1913 the Audubon Society had succeeded in passing legislation to protect native and migrating birds. (Read a good account here. (“Mama, there’s a woman with a dead body on her hat who wants to see you.”)

Ladies Home Journal, Oct. 1917, 137. Hats for tailored clothes.

Ladies Home Journal, Oct. 1917, 137. Hats for tailored clothes.

May, 1917. Hats from Ladies' Home Journal.

May, 1917. Hats from Ladies’ Home Journal.

Hats which use old velvet and fur scraps. LHJ, Nov. 1917.

Hats which use old velvet and fur scraps (and bird parts). LHJ, Nov. 1917.

However, there are plenty of delightful 1917 hats to copy without looking like a taxidermist’s shop.

Hat in ADM ad, Oct. 1917 LHJ.

Hat in ADM ad, Oct. 1917 LHJ.

Cloth covered hats, Delineator illustration, May 1917.

Cloth-covered hats, Delineator illustration, May 1917.

Delineator, hats illustrated in May 1917. The one on the right uses wide striped ribbon for a band and cockade.

Delineator, hats illustrated in May 1917. The one on the right uses wide striped ribbon for a band and cockade.

Picture hat with a tassel on a long cord. LHJ, Oct. 1917.

Picture hat with a tassel on a long cord. LHJ, Oct. 1917.

If you were persuaded to make your own hats, and you wanted to learn the milliner’s craft, the Woman’s Institute was ready to help with a correspondence course:

Ad for hat making course from Woman's Institute, Ladies Home Journal, September, 1917.

Ad for hat making course from Woman’s Institute, Ladies Home Journal, September, 1917.

 

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, Hats, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Vintage Accessories, Woman's Institute, World War I

Home Made Hats, 1917; Part 1

Collage of hats from Delineator, Sept. 1917. These are not home made hats, but give an idea of the current styles.

Collage of hats from Delineator, Sept. 1917, p. 62. These are not home made hats, but give an idea of the current styles.

Collage of hats from Delineator, Sept. 1917. These are not home made hats, but give an idea of the current styles.

Collage of hats from Delineator, Sept. 1917, p. 62. These are not home made hats, but give an idea of the wide range of styles.

I started to collect images of ladies’ hats from 1917, and discovered that I have far more material than I realized. The Ladies’ Home Journal ran a series of articles on home-made hats in 1917; women were encouraged to waste nothing, as part of the war effort. Similar make-your-own hat articles ran in September and November.

July 1917: Smart Hats From Ten-Cent Foundations

"Smart Hats from Ten Cent Foundations," Ladies Home Journal, July 1917.

“Smart Hats from Ten Cent Foundations,” Ladies’ Home Journal, July 1917. Top of page.

In July, women were encouraged to make their own hats as a patriotic duty:  “As the call for recruits arouses the fighting spirit of the men, it also stirs the inherent thriftiness of the American girl to prove her preparedness to make many of her own clothes and fight the high cost of living.” [At Envisioning the American Dream,  Sally Edelstein has been sharing wartime ads and posters aimed at the American woman in 1917. Click here for Part 1 of her series.]

Hats to make, Ladies Home Journal, July 1917. A rolled brim hat for a married woman, a picture hat trimmed with little green apples, and a pink and white gingham covered hat.

Hats to make, Ladies’ Home Journal, July 1917. A rolled brim hat trimmed with bird wings for a married woman, a picture hat trimmed with tiny apples, and a pink and white gingham covered hat.

lhj 1917 july p 76 hats matron rolled brim text

lhj 1917 july p 76 hats picture hat text

lhj 1917 july p 76 hats gingham text

Notice the military phrase: “ready for active service in town or country.”

Hats to make, and a buckram foundation; Ladies' Home Journal, July 1917

Hats to make, and a buckram frame foundation; Ladies’ Home Journal, July 1917. The hat on the right is a “mushroom hat” with braided straw under the brim.

“The frames on which the hats on this page are made are of light buckram like this [bottom center above,] and cost 10 cents each.” Several of these hats have cloth covering the frame on top, but their brims are “faced with straw.” The straw hat braid was bought by the yard and stitched together to fit the shape of the brim. Lynn McMasters shows how it’s done here.

A pre-formed hat frame or foundation like this can be ordered online, but it won’t cost ten cents any more.  There’s a decent selection of wired, buckram frames at Hat Supply.com. You can buy wired brims separately.

These are the last two hats from the July article:

A sailor hat and a hat with a quilt-pieced crown. Ladies' Home Journal, July 1917.

A pink linen sailor hat and a hat with a quilt-pieced crown. Ladies’ Home Journal, July 1917. The “quilt” hat’s brim –on the right — was faced with yellow [straw] braid.

If you are at all tempted to make your own hats, I don’t know of a better book than Denise Dreher’s From the Neck Up. She has a website, www.hatbook.com where you can order the book and/or find links to millinery supplies galore. It’s worth visiting several  suppliers — the range of styles and prices varies a lot.

September 1917: Hats You Can Make From Patterns

In September, The Ladies’ Home Journal wrote about “Hats You Can Make from Patterns.”  The LHJ sold its own sewing patterns, but you had to write to the appropriate editor and ask for the pattern by number, enclosing a 4 cent stamp for each hat pattern.

"Hats You Can Make from Patterns" in Ladies' Home Journal, September, 1917. Middle of page.

“Hats You Can Make from Patterns” in Ladies’ Home Journal, September, 1917. Middle of page 85. Hairstyles were also illustrated. The hat in the center is a Tam.

The Ladies Home Journal sold patterns for these hats. Sept. 1917, top of page hats.

The Ladies Home Journal offered patterns for these hats. Sept. 1917, top of page hats.

The black velvet hat on the left is trimmed with tight spirals of white soutache braid.The black velvet hat on the right has a “top crown of white Georgette crepe, trimmed with a white worsted cockade.

Hats from Ladies' Home Journal patterns, Sept. 1917. Images from middle of page.

Hats from Ladies’ Home Journal patterns, Sept. 1917. Images from middle of page.

Left:  “In these war times, the designers cannot overlook the [military] fatigue-cap crown, as copied on this wide-brimmed hat of blue satin with appliqued red roses.” Right: A blue satin hat with a white satin facing, trimmed with a white tassel (which seems to be falling from the top of the crown.)

Hats from Ladies' Home Journal patterns, Sept. 1917. Images from middle of page.

Hats from Ladies’ Home Journal patterns, Sept. 1917. Images from middle of page.

Left:  “This is what may be done with red and blue ribbon and a national emblem.” Right:  “Beaded pins still make a point of trimming smart hats, as you can see by this tall velvet-crowned, satin brimmed matron’s toque.” [A toque is defined as a hat without a brim. Fashion writing was as inconsistent 99 years ago as it is today.]

There was a strong military influence on women’s fashions during World War I. Pattern companies offered military insignia for trimming women’s dresses, hats and bags. The hats below were illustrated in Delineator magazine. Not only were the military cap (top left) and the shako (bottom right) popular, Napoleonic era bicorns and tricorns reappeared.

Women's hats, Delineator pattern illustration, May, 1917.

Women’s hats, Delineator pattern illustration, May, 1917. Military influence on women’s hats: An officer’s cap, a tricorn, and a shako.

Hats in fashion illustration, Ladies Home Journal, Nov. 1917. A bicorn at right.

Hats in fashion illustration, Ladies’ Home Journal, Nov. 1917. A shako at the left, a bicorn at the right.

The Ladies’ Home Journal also encouraged readers to make hats from unusual materials:

A hat made from fabric strips, and a hat covered with sacking (burlap.) Ladies' Home Journal. Sept. 1917. Pg. 84.

A hat made from the wool braid that used to be used for facing long skirt hems, and a hat covered with coarse-woven sacking. Ladies’ Home Journal. Sept. 1917. Pg. 84.

Fashionable women's hats, Delineator, October1917. These are not home-made.

Fashionable women’s hats, Delineator, October 1917. These are not home-made, but the toques, tassel, asymmetrical rolled brim, and the shape at top left share some elements with the LHJ’s home-made hats.

Coming up:  Part 2. In November, 1917,  The Ladies’ Home Journal buys $25 hats and copies them for much less.

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, A Costumers' Bookshelf, Accessory Patterns, Hats, Resources for Costumers, Vintage Accessories, World War I