After the Renaissance era, many new stylistic variations of hats came into European fashion. Many of them are still known in the 21st century.
In the first half of the 17th century, nifty cavalrymen fought in the courts of Western Europe. French court became a trendsetter, but the Thirty Years' War also brought military-style details, which later became associated with the so-called fashion of the Cavalier style. An integral attribute of the image of the cavalry was a felt or beaver hat with wide brims, which has various names in the fashion lexicon. One of the names was a 'Swedish hat' because it was common in the Swedish troops during the Thirty Years' War. But such a hat had gained popularity in French court circles, as well as in many parts of Europe. Anyway, but the hat of the cavalier at that time paved the way for the development of the Tricorne hat. The nifty French courtmen fiercely unfolded the brims of their hats and fastened ribbons, silk roses or ostrich feathers to the flaps. At the beginning of the 17th century, women's costumes also introduced "masculine" elements characteristic of cavalier fashion. Women also wore cavalier hats during riding and traveling.
During the reign of Louis XIV, the crown part of the Cavalier hat became considerably lower, but the brims became wider. The unfolding of the edges, begun by the adventurous cavalry, has now gained new expression. In 1675 they were folded back by French courtmen to form a triangle. According to "Los tercios viejos y la presencia española en Flandes" (Espasa, Madrid, 1997) by Albert Castells, the tricorn hat evolved during the 17th century from the broad-brim round hat used by Spanish soldiers in Flanders. Later it became very fashionable at the royal court of King Louis XIV.
By the end of the 17th century, the development of women's headgear was no longer dependent on the fashion of men's hats. The word 'milliner' was first mentioned in written sources in 1529. In France, the word was used to refer to haberdashery traders who had come from Milan and other cities of northern Italy. Milan was famous at the time for its costume trims - ribbons, lace, gloves and straw hats. It turned out that Milanese in France became famous for women's hats, while hatters of England dictated fashion for men. This is how during the reign of the queen Elizabeth I of England, Europe became acquainted with the hat-makers for men. By the end of the 17th century, milliners were making hats for women.
The 18th Century was the richest stage in the history of hats with amazing solutions. The sources of inspiration were varied, the offer was wide enough and subordinated to the whims of the court community. The appearance of hats at this time was also dictated by hairstyle transformations that were adequate to the trends of the Rococo fashions. The Tricorne was the most popular hat among men, but women's hats were inspired by the past-time straw hat shapes, Chinese-style cooler hats, and even nightcaps and informal bonnets were worthy of playing new tricks in accordance with pre-revolutionary events.
The high hairstyles from 1775 to 1783 were protected by the Calash bonnet. It was a French hat derived from the hood. "The name "calash" is derived from "calèche," the hood of a "French carriage"". [1., 2.] Its shape was supported by a wireframe, and this headgear could also be pushed back of the head and then it resembled a crocheted collar.
Mary Antoinette's fashion minister, Rose Bertin, was also a hairdresser, hat maker, a stylist, and a trustee who was destined to become the first female milliner known to date. It was she who transformed the ancient nightcaps and the modest bonnets to resemble the imposing hats that were appropriate to the extravagance of the pre-revolutionary court society. Already circa 1770, women's hairstyles were complemented by an impressive dormeuse which was a derivative of nightcap. It was actually a lace bonnet.
However, as early as the 1790s, the volume of hairstyles and headdresses declined. The era of imitation of the ancient world led to a concept - "return to nature". It was also intended to relieve women's headgear, even for a short while, of the daring experiments of hat-makers.
However, this is another story.
To Be Continued...
The essay was based on the material from a previously published article by its author:
Parute E. Trako cepurnieku izdomas spēles./Māksla Plus #4/2010
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My name is Edīte Parute and I am a fashion historian and researcher from Latvia, association member at "The Association of Dress Historians" (UK) and author of the book "Stila un modes enciklopēdija"/"Encyclopedia of Style and Fashion" (2010) as well as author of many publications.
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