Favorite decades: 1910's, 1800's, 1870's
Favorite artists: Anthony van Dyck, Giovanni Boldini, Henry Fuseli, Thomas Lawrence
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Mourning hat by Bruat, Inc, ca 1915 US, the Metropolitan Museum of Art
Black hats were popular for general wear in the 1910, particularly during the years of World War I, when sobriety and utility were the order of the day. Some hats, however, stand out specifically as mourning wear, suitable only to the bereaved, despite how chic the design might be. While this hat is fashionable in form and decoration, the unrelieved black clearly identifies its function. The choice of grape clusters - a normally colorful motif symbolizing fertility and abandon - produces an incongruous shock, thereby serving to strengthen the statement of mourning.
Mourning hat by Henri Bendel, ca 1915 US, the Metropolitan Museum of Art
This beautiful and stylish mourning hat from the World War I era was purchased from Henri Bendel, an important maker and importer of luxury goods. Its clean lines and elegant swath of scarf retain their sense of chic today. The single large buckle trim, a popular feature at time, has the weight and presence necessary to stand up to the severe color scheme and contrasting textures. Despite the timeless beauty of its design, this hat would have had a very limited wearability: the fabric of the scarf, a variety of crimped black crepe called “mourning crepe”, was used exclusively for mourning.
Prince and Princess Fushimi, ca early 1910’s Japan
This appears to be Prince Fushimi Hiroyasu (1875-1946) and Princess Tokugawa Tsuneko (1882-1939).
Walking suit, ca 1914
(Left) Afternoon dress, ca 1917
(Right) Dress, ca 1918
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Feb 28, 1914 Puck cover with an illustration by Nelson Greene, 1914 US
Some people in 1914 seemed to have been under the impression that the most fashionable women would dye or would soon be dying their hair outrageous colors to match the outrageous colors of their evening gowns. I’m not sure where this idea came from, but I’ve seen it referenced in a number of cartoons from that year.
Also, I’d love to have a framed print of this.