Pillbox hat

Gems 18

Pretty lady and a pillbox hat

Here we have two women from the later 1860s or early 1870s. We can tell this by their hair styles and collar styles. Let’s take a closer look.

Waved & bejeweled

Waved & bejeweled

First up, this lady has her hair styled in finger waves before being pulled to the back of her head. The dominant style for hair in the 1860s was a part in the center and smooth, oiled hair that was close to the head, before widening out around the ears. This gave the woman’s face a nice, round appearance. In contrast, this hairstyle draws the eye up toward her eyes. She also has on rather large earrings, a large cameo brooch and a necklace of some type that we cannot see fully. Her collar is a small band rather than a Peter Pan or folded style. We know this to have come into fashion in the post war years. I believe her cheeks were also slightly tinted on the photo.

Straw hat

Straw hat

Next we see this lady who decided to wear her hat for her photograph. This style of hat, which we now call a pill box/pillbox hat, was just called a hat with no special name that I can find. It has a rolled brim, and has been adorned with feathers and a wide ribbon. At first glance, it appears she is wearing a small ruffled collar above or inside her fold down collar, but in fact it is a pearl or bead necklace. She also had a large brooch of some type and you can just see an earring on her exposed ear. Her photograph was also lightly tinted on her cheeks.

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