The emperor’s new hat

I’m currently on holiday in beautiful sunny Darwin. Last Saturday we have a fun time pretending to be toffs at the Derby Day race meeting. Apart from graceful racehorses, there were also many wonderful outfits to look at and a vast array of headgear on display.

This got me wondering why women wear fascinators (as opposed to hats) especially since so many of them are just downright hilarious. Don’t get me wrong, some of these creations are beautiful, but most just make me laugh.

A small amount of research revealed that fascinators have been around since the 1600s with the first versions being a type of lace shawl with a fastener (hence the name). According to this article, they become newly popular in the 1950s as a cousin to those small pillbox hats made famous by Audrey Hepburn and Jackie Kennedy. My mother wore a beautiful pillbox hat with a small veil at her wedding in the early 1960s.

Fascinators have made a resurgence since Princess Beatrice wore her famous “pretzel” fascinator at the Royal Wedding. Apparently this fascinator became so famous it has its own FaceBook page.

We are going to another big horse race in October and several friends have offered to lend me a fascinator but I think I’ll pass. I might be persuaded to wear a proper hat (maybe not my gardening hat), but I can’t imagine wearing feathers and lace fastened atop my head. Each to her own, but it’s just not me really.

2 thoughts on “The emperor’s new hat

  1. Margaret says:

    Hello my friend!
    I thought I had responded to you a week ago but it seems that my reply disappeared into the ether! We are home from our holiday now. It was wonderful.
    love
    Marg

  2. Abigail Hall says:

    Hey Marg, loving your post. I am interested in hats especially those worn by the Royals. They have their own milliners, imagine that! A friend of mine in Sydney has several hats and fascinations made for her each year for the racing season, I am always amazed at that! Such effort and cost.

    Hope you are having fun on your holiday. Lots of love Abi

    Sent from my iPad

    >

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