My star vintage buy this week has been a beautiful 1940s hat in immaculate condition, picked up from my local vintage shop, Scarlet Rage Vintage in north London, which stocks the most exquisite dresses, occasion wear and accessories.
The hat is stamped with the label Velour Regale Merrimac and a sewn label from John Wanamaker Philadelphia, which I’ve just discovered is one of America’s oldest and original department stores, opened in 1876.
I strangely can’t find information about Velour Regale – apart from a few pieces on Etsy.com here – but John Wanamaker is said to have pioneered the department store concept in the US and according to his Wikipedia page is considered to be a leading figure in the birth of modern day marketing.
So not only did I find a beautiful vintage item but it came with a small thread of traceable history too. ….I wonder who has worn this hat over the years…
I’m always looking for great vintage hats – notoriously hard to find as sizes vary so much and they usually come up very small – so I was lucky to find a perfect fit.
The detailing is simple – a little cluster of velvet leaves on each side with a three-way, navy sequin motif. The hat sits on the top or side of the crown and holds securely via little flexible bars on each side (discreetly tucked beneath the detailing) and feels strangely secure.
I’ll be wearing this as soon as I can – day or evening events – and will probably style hair long with a casual pin-curl twist at the front.