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Tam-O’-Shanters for the 1920s, Part 1

Butterick Tam-o'-Shanter pattern # 3157. Pictured in Delineator, March, 1924.

Butterick Tam-o’-Shanter pattern # 3157. Pictured in Delineator magazine, March, 1924.

1920s Alternatives to the Cloche Hat

Although the cloche is the definitive “Nineteen Twenties” hat style, there were alternatives – including wide brims, turbans, “very small hats” (almost brimless), and the Tam-o’-Shanter. (For more about the history of Tams, click here.)

Other Paris hat styles -- besides the cloche -- for May 1925. Delineator.

Other Paris hat styles — besides the cloche — for May 1925. Delineator magazine.

Above, from left to right:  1) “a wide hat of lacquer-red straw,”  2) “a turban-hat of twisted ribbon,”  3) “the very small hat turned up at the front or back.”

Two more "very small hats" from the article on Paris styles, May 1925. Delineator.

Two more “very small hats” from the article on Paris styles, May 1925. Delineator magazine.

 Tam-o’-Shanters for Women and Girls, Mid-Nineteen Twenties

Butterick Tam-o'-Shanter pattern #52. Delineator, September 1924.

Butterick Tam-o’-Shanter pattern #5458. Delineator, September 1924.

A very good article about twenties hats, “1920s Hat Styles Beyond the Cloche,” by Vintage Dancer, mentions that the tam was usually worn by young women and girls, but it also appears occasionally with rather dressy outfits on adult women:

Dressy Tams on Women, from the Delineator, 1924 & 1925.

Dressy Tams on Women, from Delineator magazine, 1924 & 1925.

Butterick’s tam-o’-shanter patterns were usually sized for “Ladies, Misses (i.e., ages 14 to 20), Children and Girls.”  Tams could be made from wool flannel, silk velvet, satin, cotton velours, taffeta, and other elegant fabrics. Although a pom-pom was the traditional trim, tassels, ribbons, feathers, embroidery, jewels, and other ornaments decorated 1920s tams for women.

1920s Tams decorated with jewels, embroidery, and ribbons. Delineator.

1920s Tams decorated with jewels, embroidery, and ribbons. Delineator magazine.

Magazines usually featured tam o’shanters in fall and winter, but this summer tam appears to be made of lace or, possibly, popcorn-knitted or crocheted silk ribbon:

A large summer tam worn with a sheer dress trimmed with pulled threads.  June 1926. Delineator.

A large summer tam worn with a sheer dress trimmed with drawn threadwork. June 1926. Delineator magazine.

The Tam:  Simple to Sew

A basic tam-o'-shanter shape; Vogue pattern 7980, dated 2004.

A basic tam-o’-shanter shape; Vogue pattern 7980, dated 2004. The pattern calls it a beret.

Butterick offered many Tam-o’-Shanter patterns during the 1920s, perhaps because the tam was easier for a home stitcher to sew than a cloche (although four- and six- gored cloche patterns were also sold.) In fact, I have come across so many 1920s Tam-o’-Shanter patterns that I can only describe a few in this post.

In an era when women and men rarely left the house without wearing a hat or cap, the tam-o-shanter was a quick, un-fussy hat to put on for the trip to and from school, or to the local shops. A schoolgirl or telephone operator could take it off and hang it with her coat, and there was no danger of a tam-o’-shanter being crushed; they looked crushed to begin with!

A Tam-o'-Shanter pattern from Butterick, March 1924.

A Tam-o’-Shanter pattern from Butterick, March 1924.

Butterick Tam-0′-Shanter Patterns, 1921 to 1925

These three tam patterns were featured in Butterick’s Delineator magazine in 1924 and 1925. Their numbers, in the three- and four- thousand range, indicate that they were first issued before 1924, but they were still being included in pattern illustrations for 1924 and 1925. Although some Butterick hat patterns are for children or girls only, these tams were intended for ‘Misses’ (ages 15 to 20) and adult women (“Ladies”) as well.

Butterick Tam-o’-Shanter Pattern # 3157

Butterick Tam-o'-Shanter pattern # 3157. Pictured in Delineator, March, 1924.

Butterick Tam-o’-Shanter pattern # 3157. Pictured in Delineator magazine, March, 1924.

Three views of Butterick Tam pattern # 3157. April to June, 1924.

Three views of Butterick Tam pattern # 3157. April to June, 1924. It can be worn with the band tucked in (left) or showing (right.)

These full-length pictures show them with appropriate daytime clothing:

Butterick Tam pattern #3147 as illustrated in April to June of 1924.

Butterick Tam pattern #3147 as illustrated in April to June of 1924. Delineator magazine.

Butterick Tam Hat Pattern #4886

Butterick Tam Pattern # 4886, issued late 1923; illustrated in Delineator in March 1924 (L) and January 1925 (R).

Butterick Tam Pattern # 4886, issued late 1923; illustrated in Delineator in March 1924 (L) and January 1925 (R).

The two-headed pin which goes through so many 1920s hats is called a “cliquet” or scarf / jabot pin. The Cartier and America Exhibition in San Francisco included several superb art deco examples. You can see some of them  here, at a Yahoo image search.

Butterick Tam pattern #4886. All were illustrated in April 1924. Delineator.

Butterick Tam pattern #4886. All were illustrated in April 1924. Delineator magazine.

Here are the full-length illustrations of the outfits tam #4886 was shown with:

Butteric tam pattern #4486 as worn in April 1924.

Butterick tam pattern #4886 as worn in April, 1924. Delineator magazine.

Butterick Tam-o’- Shanter Pattern # 4898

Butterick Tam pattern # 4898, issued in late 1923, but illustrated in 1924 and 1925. Delineator magazine.

Butterick Tam pattern # 4898, issued in late 1923, but illustrated in 1924 and 1925. Delineator magazine.

Although all four of these illustrations show girls or teens, pattern #4898 was sized for Girls, Misses, and Ladies.

Sidelight: The girls on the left have a hair-do associated with Mary Pickford, (“Little Mary”) the silent star who played child-women well into adulthood. She played Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm the year this picture was taken (1917), and Pollyanna in 1920, when she was 28 years old. She finally bobbed her hair in 1928. Mothers who were fans of Mary Pickford movies were probably responsible for their daughters’ long, long curls in 1925.

Mary Pickford in an Ad for Pompeian Hair and Face Massage Creams. 1917.

Mary Pickford in an Ad for Pompeian Hair and Face Massage Creams. 1917.

 

 

 

 

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Filed under 1920s, Accessory Patterns, Hairstyles, Hats, Vintage Accessories, Vintage patterns

Tam-o’-Shanters for Women, 1917

Tams for Women. Ladies' Home Journal, 1917; Delineator, Sept. 1917.

Tams for Women. Ladies’ Home Journal, 1917; Delineator, Sept. 1917.

Tam o’ shanters have been popular hats for women at several periods, including the turn of the century . . .

Women in tams, as pictured in Punch Magazine, 1896 and 1901.

Women in tams, as pictured in Punch Magazine, 1896 and 1901.

the World War I era . . .

Young woman in a fashionable velvet tam, about 1918.

Young woman in a fashionable velvet tam, about 1918.

the twenties, the thirties, the nineteen sixties, and into the twenty-first century:

Tam "Beret" pattern, Vogue # 7980, 2004.

Tam “Beret” pattern, Vogue # 7980, 2004.

Origins of the Tam o’ Shanter

The Tam-o’-Shanter (or Tam o’ Shanter) was originally a hat worn by Scottish men.

Two Scotsmen, as drawn by Charles Keene in Punch Magazine, 1880.

Two Scotsmen, as drawn by Charles Keene in Punch Magazine, 1880.

With them it entered the military . . .

A private in Crawford’s Highland Regiment, 1740, Illustrated by Pierre Turner. From Michael Barthrop’s British Infantry Uniforms Since 1660.

A private in Crawford’s Highland Regiment, 1740, Illustrated by Pierre Turner. From Michael Barthrop’s British Infantry Uniforms Since 1660.

and became part of the official uniform of some regiments, like the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.

Tams and Berets

In its simplest form, a tam is just a round or oval piece of cloth gathered into a band around the head.

Some tams are made of two round pieces, or a round piece and a cylinder, stitched together around the circumference; the round hole in the lower piece can be eased into the band with or without gathering. This can produce a crisp look, as in this Vogue pattern illustration from 2004.

Vogue pattern 7980, dated 2004.

Vogue pattern 7980, dated 2004.

Vogue called this a beret in 2004; “tam-o-shanter” had disappeared from the current fashion vocabulary by then. Today, you can find tams – some with a 1920s look – at hats.com, but they are classified as berets, not tam o’ shanters.

A beret.

A beret.

Sometimes the words “tam ” and “beret” are used interchangeably, but a beret usually has a very narrow binding around the head, and a relatively small crown.

Tam, 1917.

Tam, 1917.

The tam o’ shanter usually has a wider band.

Also, the crown of a tam is much bigger than the band, and the tam is rarely symmetrical when worn by women; it tilts or droops to one side or to the back.

Both berets and tams can be worn with the band turned to the inside, where it isn’t seen:

Tam o' shanter, 1925.

Tam o’ shanter, 1925. Delineator.

Tams for Women, 1917

Tams were very popular with women’s fashions during the First World War. This Paris design “for very young women” is by Paquin, as famous in her day as Poiret or Patou:

A chic Paris costume for a 'very young lady" by Mme. Paquin, 1917. Delineator.

A chic Paris costume for ‘very young women” by Mme. Paquin, 1917. Delineator.

Here, a Butterick coat pattern is accessorized with a tam (left):

On the left, a tam worn with a coat by Butterick, Sept. 1917. Delineator.

On the left, a tam worn with a coat pattern by Butterick, Sept. 1917. Delineator.

In 1917, tams could reach rather extreme sizes, something like a chef’s toque (technically, a ‘toque” is any hat without a brim; since tam o’ shanters have no brim,  the line between tams and toques can blur. Most fashion hats described as “toques” are more vertical than horizontal, lacking these huge crowns.)

Women in tams, Sept. 1917. Delineator.

Women in tams (one is like a chef’s toque), Sept. 1917. Delineator.

A tam made of fur and a tam made of velvet; Ladies' Home Journal, Nov. 1917.

A tam made of fur and a tam made of fur or velvet; Ladies’ Home Journal, Nov. 1917.

Tams were also popular because they could be knitted or crocheted:

Delineator crochet patterns, Sept. 1917.

Delineator crochet patterns, Sept. 1917.

Ad for Bear Brand Yarn, Ladies' Home Journal, Oct. 1917.

Ad for Bear Brand Yarn, Ladies’ Home Journal, Oct. 1917.

This young lady got really carried away and made a matching tam, scarf, and handbag trimmed with Vari-colored cross-stitch:

Ladies' Home Journal, Sept. 1917.

Ladies’ Home Journal, Sept. 1917.

A knit tam could be rolled up and stuck in a pocket, which made them handy for wearing to school.

Both Delineator magazine and Ladies’ Home Journal encouraged their readers to economize during the First World War by making new clothes from worn-out or out-moded clothing.  One Home Journal reader bragged that she salvaged enough fabric from her old velvet skirt to make tams for both of her daughters and a “small toque” for herself:

Ladies' Home Journal, Sept. 1917.

Ladies’ Home Journal, Sept. 1917.

Her examples look very much like this soft tam (or toque?) from Delineator magazine:

Delineator, Sept 1917.

Delineator, Sept 1917.

Perhaps the model on the right is explaining that her clever mother made this soft velvet hat from an old skirt.

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under 1870s to 1900s fashions, 1900s to 1920s, Accessory Patterns, Hats, Vintage Accessories, Vintage Couture Designs