Thursday, February 5, 2009

Take it From Coco

Coco Chanel began her career as a milliner, making hats that were sleek and close to the head, a typical rebellion against the unwieldy belle epoque confections then in fashion. "How can the brain function under those things?" she said. Zing!

The lady herself, always thinking, started out by adorning plain bonnets bought in a department store with fancies of her own devising.

If you love hats but can never find one that suits you perfectly, why not follow her example? Charity/thrift stores are the retirement homes of perfectly functional old hats. Find a nice plain one in good condition that fits not-too-snug, get hold of some glue suitable for fabric, and get trimming. You can buy all sorts of wonderful trim from dedicated online stores. Ebay is also a source. Or have a good rummage in the shop that sold the hat: costume brooches, odd bits of glitter or feathers, applique on bags, belts, and garments all can be cannibalized to good use.

For more information on how the original numbers were made and worn, have a look at Fashion Era's excellent site here. For great visual inspiration, check out the Coco blog here. Happy hatting!

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