Hat From the Past

Royal Hats Well known British company Lock and Co. Hatters recently shared this wonderful photo of a groom arriving at his wedding in 1908, 1111 years ago, wearing a one of their gleaming silk top hats. While he’s not ‘officially’ royal, I think his pedigree (grandson of a duke, son of a lord) and status is close enough to warrant featuring here.

Photo from social media as indicated

12 thoughts on “Hat From the Past

  1. Minor correction – while Winston Spencer Churchill was a duke’s (Marlborough) grandson, his father was not Marquess of Blandford (the dukedom’s first courtesy title). Winston’s fathercwas Lord Randolph Spencer Churchill, the third son of the seventh duke.

    This is a fantastic photo, thanks for posting it.

  2. Just an FYI, I’m pretty sure you meant 111 years and not the 1000 more you added to it!
    Wonderful picture and beautiful hat.

  3. What a beautiful silk topper! I wonder if anyone in the Churchill family still wears any of the late PM’s hats?

  4. Just think. He was going to marry his beloved Clemmie. What a story they had! And Clementine had a lot of hats too.

  5. Fantastic photo – thanks, Hat Queen! Churchill wore MANY hats in his lifetime, and quite a few top hats! It goes to show that just about anyone looks great when he’s well dressed! There’s a neat little scene in “Darkest Hour,” when Gary Oldman selects the perfect hat off the wall full of different hats to wear. The British Bulldog must have been a real character!
    HQ, check your email, you may find something amusing.

  6. Of course, we’ll need Chicago Chuck’s expert opinion, but I’m impressed at the gloss, so apparent even in the grainy photo. No wonder these pieces are kept for years.

    • Awaiting Chuck’s comment, I can tell you that the hat is made from, or rather covered in, silk plush. In French it is called “panne de soie” and it isn’t being made anymore (as far as I know).

      The silk is brushed in a circular mouvement with steam and a special fabric pad, to give it it’s beautiful shine. At home, a gentleman (or a gentleman’s gentleman) would brush his hat with a little brush that was kept in the hat box. I have a top hat and brush which once belonged to someone in my family.

      • Wies, I think this was discussed once before, some time ago. Isn’t this the type of silk that is no longer made because they no longer know how to make (or keep in repair) the machines that make the silk? Something like that? I think it was here on the blog that I read that.

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