Q: What saved the beaver from near extinction?
A: The silk worm–silk replaced beaver felt in hat making in the mid-1900’s.
Q: Who was the first person to wear a fedora?
A: Audacious actress Sarah Bernhardt donned a felted hat with a pleat down the middle in her starring role in the play Fédora in 1882 and fashion history was made. Bernhardt admirer Oscar Wilde began rocking a fedora the same year.
These are some of the fun hat facts collected by the world’s largest millinery museum in Portland, Oregon. I’m taking a private tour of the museum tomorrow with fellow 2014 Golden Heart award finalist Jillian Lark.
I love doing historical research for my novels in person! I’ll be back soon with fabulous millinery pics.