The hat: a sight on the most eclectic fashion accessoryFrancesca Palange
“Cappellus: small cowl to cover the head”. This is the etymology for “hat”, the name given to the great master of fashion accessories. An object that, since ancient times, has been embraced by different ethnicities, cultures and traditions.
In the light of its global appreciation and of its well-known eccentricity, the hat has been selected as an object of research and contemplation by the Italian Association Weavers Coordination (Coordinamento Tessitori) for the new travelling exhibit titled “The hat, the necessary accessory”. The exhibition was inaugurated last June 2016 in the Italian Museum of the Wool Art in Pratovecchio Stia (Arezzo) and at the end of September, was set up at a school of the Leumann Village in Collegno, during the event “String by string, a knot will be created”.
The staff of No Serial Number was present during the exhibition and we were very keen to see how fantasy has inspired and created so many different hats.The room of the Leumann school was chock-full of gaudy, eclectic, impossible hats, with lines, bends, circles and lots more of unexpected details. Some were curved, others more sharp-cornered, some were small, others enormous or even very long. Made with fabrics, felt, beads, knitted or crocheted, hats can definitely be made with whatever creativity offers.
They were fifty-two on show, some of them created by veterans of the textile world, others results of young students of seven high-schools which participated in the competition. All of them were strictly selected by a jury which included two art historians specialised in fabrics and costumes, two textile artists and one milliner.
Collective consciousness soon goes back to Queen Elisabeth when talking about extravagant hats. And actually, if she had come to the exhibition’s inauguration, we have no doubt she would have really appreciated and would have worn each of these hats with pleasure.
Long live the queen! But, above all, long live the hat!
Text and photos by Eletta Revelli
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