July 13, 2007

Doris loved hats

Filed under: Millinery trivia and events,Other Millinery people — Cristina de Prada @ 11:12 pm


Newspaper cut outs of hats - 1959

A couple of years ago I bought through Ebay a pink ring binder tied with a burgundy bow and filled to the rim with: 

  • Newspaper cut outs of hats, glued and classified by type of hat (Toques, Breton, Fur hats, Cloche, etc.)
  • Printed instructions on how to make hats
  • Personal notes about how to make hats
  • Samples of different kinds of bows
  • Patterns for different sort of hats

As far as I can tell it belonged to a woman called Doris, from Denver (Colorado), who took millinery classes from a lady called June Burton. That must have been in the late fifties or early sixties. What happened after she took the classes we don’t know, I would like to think that she went on to make beautiful hats, and certainly she kept on cutting out pictures and drawings of hats from newspapers and magazines.

The binder crossed my path in 2005, when I saw it on Ebay and was the lucky winner for $41 plus shipping. How many of these beautiful scrapbooks end up in the skip because whoever has inherited them does not think they have value! It breaks ones heart to think that.

Here you can take a look at some of the pictures.

first page on the binder - click to enlargeA page from the binder - click to enlarge  


Here is a written explanation for a Hat…

page from binder

Patterns from the folder 

 cut outs from folder

Another image of the binder

See the rest of the pictures by clicking here.


  1. That’s amazing! I wonder if it is something you could scan and assemble into a PDF, then publish it through one of those Print-on-Demand places. It looks like a wonderful resource!

    Comment by LaBricoleuse — July 14, 2007 @ 8:12 pm

  2. What a gold mine! This post should of had a sound track of your sighing, and groaning with lust over some those pictures. That is what happens every time I look through my own inspiration binder. EVERY millinery should have one; it helps to get over the fact that is isnt’t possible two own every fabulous hat, but at least you can look at pictures of them.
    The little straw on the last page with the veiling tight across the face and neck reminds me of the first time I saw someone wearing such a veil. It is correct, they did wear the veil against the skin, but it sure disturbed me to see it. And I don’t startle easily, goths don’t even phase me, but a veil mashed up against the face? Freaked me out.
    The crushable floral hat would get stares around here too, but I think they are just fun! Old floral hats like that are adorable displayed on potted plant stands, especially the ones that spiral up.
    I am SO glad you shared your ebay treasure! And I like your goal to wear a hat every day…if I go out the house, I have a hat on or with me. It took awhile, now it just seems natural. (I think I am hooked on the compliments!)

    Comment by jill — July 14, 2007 @ 9:38 pm

  3. I had not thought of scanning everything into PDF’s but it’s a wonderful idea. I don’t know about print on demand other than what I just googled, but sounds like an interesting idea. So it goes on the list of things to do!
    Regarding my sighing and groaning, well I think if I add that kind of soundtrack it would attract the wrong kind of public 😉
    About that veiled hat, I had not realized how clautrophobic it looked until you mentioned it! It comes as a surprise that real people on the real world would wear a veil that way. On the bright side it looks like the holes on the veil are big enough to let a straw through, so one would not starve.
    One question by the way, what on earth is a coolie? Looks like a volcano shape hat, but I didn’t know the word.

    Comment by cristinadeprada — July 14, 2007 @ 10:24 pm

  4. “Coolie” is a word that people used to use to describe the conical straw hats that Chinese workmen would wear to protect themselves from the sun–now though i think it’s considered to have racist undertones and people don’t use the word to describe that style hat as much. The “proper” english word for such a hat is a sedge hat.

    I have a few things i am trying to get together to offer via a print-on-demand service–a book on parasol making, for one example. I did a book of poetry and short stories through Lulu.com and thought that the product was of decent quality.

    Comment by LaBricoleuse — July 18, 2007 @ 6:43 pm

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