Thursday, September 22, 2011

Pin curls! - Attempt #2

...and, one would hope, more helpful this time.

Another attempt at a 1940s-era hairstyle--this one more successful (it just takes practice!). I started by parting my hair into three sections - left, right, and back - and made smaller pin curls than last time. I curled my bangs forward and to the left this time. I used 24 pin curl clips and several bobby pins for this set. I included my most recent headgear acquisition at the end, a perfect touch on top of this particular hairstyle.

Here is a good look at the back of my head with all the pin curls in. 
They don’t have to be very organized, just using all your hair. And the pin curl clips them-selves don’t have to cover the whole curl.

Smaller sections make for tighter curls, and larger sections often require more clips.
I curled the front-side sections the same direction on purpose: counter-clockwise. This helps when I want them to frame my face after I brush them out.
I pulled my bangs across and then curled them counter-clockwise as well. This allowed me more ability to mold them once they were brushed out.

This is with all the clips removed. Stop here to create the Shirley Temple look.

Unclip, shake out the curls, spray down, and run your fingers through with de-frizz gel or spray. It’s a bouncy look, fun for those with straight hair and hat if you like.

As you can see, the bangs are looser curls but they are fairly uniform to allow me to keep them over my forehead. They are also long enough for me to pin them down as I please.

Here I have liberally brushed out the curls.
The bangs were not compliant when I brushed them straight out, so make sure to curl with the brush if you can (round brush!).
Also, brushing each curl individually gave me a lot of volume in the back.

The final product!

I used the brush to curl the bangs and sprayed them into place. The longer bangs were curled and pinned under, and are neatly hidden by the hat. 
I had enough volume to wear a hat that would emphasize the shape, and the veil is a lovely finishing touch.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Dream a little dream of hats

I’ve spent a significant portion of the last five years carving out my corner in the world. In so doing, I have acquired several items that are expressive of my passion for antiques and vintage living. 
Foremostly, hats. All shapes and sizes, and they must be elegant. I have heard that some people are “hat people,” and some people are not. I’m not sure I believe that, because after quite a few hours of research, I’ve discovered there are about as many types of hats as there are countries in the world. 
With that kind of variety, you will most certainly be able to find a hat that suits you even if people tell you (or you tell yourself) that you are not a “hat people.” Hats are a beautiful expression of personality, and with the right hat, everybody is a “hat people.”
I love the example of Jacqueline Kennedy. I read in another vintage blog that she had a designated personal stylist, fashion designer Oleg Cassini, who was responsible for dressing her throughout her career as First Lady. She was henceforth a trendsetter, and was the woman to bring to the world the pillbox hat. Thank you to Lisa, writer of the Vintage Fashion Librarian blog, for a fashionable history of the fashionable Jackie O.
There’s no way I could write about every hat known to man, because frankly I’m not that interested in conical Asian hats or baseball caps. I can, however, offer an exposition of the more interesting hat types one finds in antique shops and can easily examine for quality.
Soon I will post my own examples of these hats - as many as I have (and sadly that does not include the well-known top hat) - so you can see how they look.
:: Types of hats ::
This word is French for “bell,” and the hat looks like its name. Very popular in the 1920s.
Also French, this hat has a wide brim that is meant to shield one from the weather.
A hat worn on the back of the head and designed to draw attention to the face. Designed by Halston for Jackie Kennedy on the occasion of her husband’s inauguration in 1961.
A brimmed hat made from reeds or straw; one of the oldest hat types in human history. In women’s hat fashion, this hat is often shaped into a bonnet and decorated with ribbons, flowers, etc.
In the context of women’s fashionable hats in the last two centuries, these hats were often sewn to a foundational hat so as to be more easily removed. Most popular in the early 20th century.
Pork Pie
Quite popular in the 1990s, this hat has a flexible brim, flat top, and is crown-shaped with an indentation around the top. 
Most popular in the 1960s (and worn more by men than women), this hat is one of the more popular hats of today, reminiscent of gangster-style fedoras. The brim is turned up at the back, and the top of the crown is pinched in the front so as to be easily removed. Its name comes from George du Maurier’s novel Trilby.
Glengarry Cap
An alternative to the Balmoral bonnet, this hat is boat-shaped, and has a toorie (little pom-pom) on the top. It also has ribbons down the back, and a rosette cockade (knot of colored ribbons) on the side. Believe it or not, this hat is traditionally worn by men. In Scotland. That should make it less surprising. Those men also wear skirts.
This is often a trim for another type of hat, being a kind of headband. Sometimes it has a stiff structure, sometimes not.
Originally the name for men’s headgear but now worn primarily by women and children, this hat has a deep brim and most often ribbons to tie it under the chin. Very stylish and with a myriad of variations throughout the Regency and early Victorian eras, bonnets were eventually replaced by veiled hats with less brim in the mid- to late-19th century.
A cousin of the tam o’ shanter of Scotland, this hat is soft, round, and flat-crowned. Usually one thinks of a mustachioed French artist with a palette and paintbrush in his hand, but although this hat was mass-produced first in France and Spain in the 19th century, this hat has been worn since the Bronze Age.
One doesn’t know where to start--there are so many options when it comes to this headpiece! Typically an accessory of formalwear, fascinators are worn by women only--attached to the head in lieu of a hat. These were popularized in the early 20th century--think 1920s flapper headbands. Before that, they were actually a lacy head covering bedecked with feathers.
Tudor bonnet
This hat is reminiscent of Henry VIII, yes, but is now worn mostly in academic circles (go to a college graduation ceremony sometime and check out the faculty). It’s a soft, round cap with a stiff little brim with a tassel hanging from it. Frankly, it looks much more stylish - although slightly less recognizable - than the standard mortarboard one wears at one’s own graduation ceremony.
Top hat
Worn, I am told, tilted exactly 10 degrees, this hat ranks among the most recognizable, most noble hats in the history of millinery. Made famous by Lord Ribblesdale in a portrait, there is a popular myth that it was first worn by John Hetherington, who was thrown in jail for it. Sadly, that story is not true, as these hats predated the 19th century. Also made famous by Uncle Sam himself, this wonderful hat is tall with a flat crown and is often made of felted beaver fur. Most excitingly, these hats were made collapsible at one point because they took up too much space in cloakrooms! Read that history here.