One of the very first posts I did was about the historic house, Mount Clare Mansion, just a few blocks from where I live. The house museum is run by the Society of Colonial Dames in America of Maryland, of which my mother is one. They have exhibits throughout the year, and the newest one, Hats Off to History, just opened this week. And the best part is that Mount Clare has free admission for everyone during October.
I was lucky enough to be invited over for a tour and tea this afternoon and it was a great exhibit. Mount Clare is fortunate to have much of the original furnishings from the house and even some of the clothes from the Revolutionary War-era owners. The exhibit traces the history of hats for both men and women, in the Carroll family who owned the house, and in Baltimore, which was known for its hat-making industry.
The decline of hat-wearing for men dates from 1960 when John Kennedy was inaugurated and didn't wear a hat, even though the day was bitter cold. And while Jacqueline Kennedy was known for her pill-box hats, women stopped wearing hats by the mid-1960's.
In the UK, there are still many hat-wearing occasions, including Royal Ascot, where both men and women are expected to wear hats. At weddings, almost all the women wear hats, and there are even hat agencies where you can rent a hat to match your outfit. That's very handy when you're flying from the US for a wedding!
I love a nice straw boater. They're just so classic, and remind me of my "brother-in-law", M, who looks great in one!Everyone was asked to wear a hat and one woman really got in the spirit by wearing a vintage dress, with gloves and a great 50's style handbag.
Someone else had a wonderful vintage handbag which she'd left on the table. I thought the bag and sunglasses looked so classic, so I snapped a shot of this vignette.
I have a few hats that I like - a pink straw hat, a rough weave straw hat, a polar-fleece glen plaid hat and a great rain hat. Oh... and a baseball cap or two! Do you wear hats?