Book Review: Hats, Caps & Bonnets: 1855-1875

Earlier this week, I said that I would try to get to sewing this week. Oh well (sigh).

SG and I made fairies to give to some of our friends. We took a trip to DC with DH. I met with a dear friend for a long, chatty dinner.

I learned that my affinity for power tools does not extend to table saws.  I own and can operate my scroll saw, band saw, lathe and rotary tool.  There is a steep learning curve, however, with my new mini table saw. I have even watched YouTube videos for help.  I WILL MASTER THIS.

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So today, I thought I would share one of my favorite doll books with you, Hats, Caps & Bonnets: 1855-1875, 12 Patterns for Dolls & An Illustrated History, by Marianne Burke.  When I met her at the UFDC convention several years ago, I acted like a goofy, pop-star groupie and gushed about how much I love her book.

I got it shortly after it was published in 2009 (by Reverie Publishing Company), and read it cover-to-cover many times.

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The first section gives a general history and provides definitions for hats, caps and bonnets and their various parts.

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Then, the author explains the variations in fashion decade by decade with diagrams from period publications,

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historic photos,

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and extant examples of headwear for both dolls and people.

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The next section gives patterns and very thorough instructions for making 12 different types of headwear.

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From lacy confections to wired bonnets to wool felt or straw, the instructions, diagrams and patterns are very clear and complete.

This book transported and inspired me. I felt that I was learning trade secrets from a bygone era.

Many of my favorite doll reference books are no longer in print, hard to find or very pricy. Hats, Caps & Bonnets: 1855-1875, 12 Patterns for Dolls & An Illustrated History, is still available on Amazon for a reasonable cost and I recommend it highly.

 


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