Portrait of Duchess of Polignac by Elisabeth Louise Vigée-Lebrun, 1789
3151767 sent a message asking about ideas for decorating a newly-bought 18th century straw hat so I started searching on this vastness of interwebs and barely could stop! Now I want to make one for myself! All you need is ribbons, feathers, flowers or whatever you find lying around in the house. As for the colors, I think everything’s allowed! The brighter the better. Sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it? The hardest part is probably shaping the hat. Now, you didn’t mention the length of the brims or the depth of the crown. However, apparently you can adjust those to your desired size. I found some tutorials which I hope you will find useful, here, here (bottom of the page) and here (if you plan to have a period-correct hat, don’t rely too much on this last one, because women very rarely wore tricorne hats, mostly for hunting).
My advice is … be creative and go crazy! Apparently 18th century women would put anything on top of their heads anyway so don’t be afraid to trim your hat with the hugest feather or the most colourful silk ribbon. Look for inspiration in movies like The Duchess or Marie Antoinette. See the mini picspam below (click one of the tiny rectangles) and some of my previous posts: link, link, link, link.
I’d love to see the result!
Self Portrait in a Straw Hat of Elizabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun, after 1782.