Hat bands using scarves made of expensive fabric, such as silk, were often used as a form of decoration.
Hats for Men
The Elizabethan fashion dictated that the head was adorned with a hat. The Upper Classes used a variety of materials in their hats but it is fascinating to note that in 1571 a law was passed which ordered everyone over the age of six to wear a woollen cap on Sundays and holidays in order to help England's wool trade. The Upper Classes were excused from obeying this law.
- The materials that hats were made of were silk, velvet, taffeta and wool
- Older men covered their heads with a coif ( commonly referred to as the 'biggin' ) under their hats
- The taller the hat the more important the man - lower classes wore woollen flat caps
- The Muffin cap - worn by the lower classes in cheap linen ( similar to a cooks hat )
- Tall Crown hat worn by the Upper Class - made with expensive fabrics - silk velvet etc
- The Flat cap worn by the Upper and Lower Class
- The Toque - similar to a flat cap
- Hat decorations - All classes and ages wore feathers in their hats. Hats worn by the Upper Class were expensively decorated with jewelled bands (called bilaments), broaches, badges and ribbons
- A Fool's Cap featured hornes, eares, ill faces and other such fopperies and were worn by court jesters, or fools
Elizabethan Hats for Men - a comment dating back to 1583.
During the Elizabethan era pamphlets were printed and distributed commenting on life in Elizabethan England. A writer of one such pamphlet was a well travelled Londoner called Philip Stubbes. Some interesting facts and confirmation of information about Elizabethan Hats for men can be obtained from the words of Philip Stubbes. A first hand impression of the fashions of the Elizabethan era are invaluable - but the Elizabethan style of writing can be hard going. The following information has therefore been taken from the points he made on Hats for men:
- The style of hats are referred to ranging from high hats to flat hats
- The materials that hats were made of were silk, velvet, taffeta, wool and sarcenet
- Sarcenet was a delicate silk fabric
- The range of different colors for hats
- The fast changing fashions for hats
- The prolific use of feathers to decorate the hat - even children had them in their hats.