Hatpins reached a peak of popularity between the 1890s and 1920s, as music hall actresses like Lillian Russell and Lillian Langtry fueled the popularity of large elaborate hats without bonnet strings. Having originated in the 1850s to secure straw hats, hatpins became longer and more ornate over time (1910 was the height of hatpin length, with the stems alone reaching 10 to 12 inches).
The mass produced white or black bead on a pin was the basic 'working girl' hatpin, but many high end hatpins were made by jewelers of brass, copper, sterling silver, gold, or gold or silver wash. Other materials included Carnival glass, rhinestones, hand blown molded glass, micro mosaic, or hand painted or transferred porcelain like the Japanese Satsuma. There were also hatpins made with ivory, emeralds, stone, amber, tortoise shell, jet, celluloid and other plastics, mother of pearl, and coral.
Key hatpin manufacturers included Unger Brothers, Lincoln, William Kerr, Alvin Manufacturing, R. Blackington and Company, Day and Clarke, and The Sterling Company. Notable hatpin designers included Charles Horner, Louis Tiffany, William Codman, James T. Wooley, Barton Jenks, and George Gebelein.
Hatpins spanned many styles including Baroque, Etruscan Revival, Greek Revival, Egyptian Revival, Oriental influence, Arts and Crafts, Art Nouveau and even Art Deco, before waning around WW1 when metals became scarce and hats got smaller.
Collectors also seek specialized hatpins, including hallmarked hatpins, hatpins that serve vanities, opera hatpins, and compact hatpins that have a mirror and a powder puff. Amethyst and pearls are popular, as well as Plique-a-Jour enamel. Hatpin holders are also sought after.
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Cathy Gordon's Jewelry Gallery
Clubs & Associations
- American Hatpin Society
- Hat Pin Society of Great Britain
- American Society of Jewelry Historians
- Association for the Study of Jewelry and Related Arts
- Society of Jewellery Historians
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Recent News: Hatpins and Hatpin Holders
Source: Google News
Smithsonian to honor La. family's civil rights effortsUSA TODAY, August 29th
They also donated two hat pins worn by women who participated in the 105-mile protest march from Bogalusa to the state capitol of Baton Rouge in the summer of 1967. In addition to his other achievements, Robert Hicks was the first black supervisor at ...Read more
Blotter: 12-pound ham swiped from porch in Oak ParkChicago Tribune, August 26th
A man in his 40s approach a Chicago resident on the 1100 block of South Boulevard at 10:50 p.m. Aug. 19, began an argument that resulted in both spitting at each other. The man in his 40s hit the Chicagoan with a garbage can lid and fled. Two UPS ...Read more
Dublin/Hancock/Jaffrey 'Paying it backward'Monadnock Ledger Transcript, August 26th
Another candidate running for state representative as a Democrat, Patricia Martin of Rindge, wearing a straw-hat-pin on her shirt to honor Granny D, said Friday at the reception that PACs can spend on whatever they want, including negative campaigns...Read more
Edinburgh 2014 review: Helen Lawrence – film-noir tricks make a hollow stage ...The Guardian, August 25th
It's a world of hat-pin murders, protection rackets and blackmail. The purpose of the tale, however, is not to reflect on any thematic concerns, but merely to showcase the production's technical ingenuity. Although it takes in greed, deception and...Read more
The Future of the Paternoster GangDoctor Who TV (blog), August 25th
Take their new sonic devices designed for Series Eight: they're futuristic gadgets inspired by everyday Victorian paraphernalia, for example Vastra's hat pin. On a greater scale, this could prefigure even greater changes if an alternate timeline were...Read more
Heitkamp wins button design contestSidney Daily News (subscription), August 20th
The button depitcts the 40th anniversary of the Oktoberfest celebration. Presale of the button and hat pin will start Sept. 1. Presale for the Oktoberfest sewatshirts and long sleeve tees will be available by appointment starting Sept. 15 by contcting...Read more
Leave it right hereMissoula Independent, August 19th
Early visitors to Yellowstone Park threw coins into hot pools and used hatpins to scratch their initials into limestone deposits. Others packed logs into geyser openings, then waited to see them rocket out with the next eruption. This fun only stopped...Read more
Exhibit marks 40th OktoberfestThe Daily Standard, August 19th
Oldiges has compiled a pictorial history of the event including photos of the grand marshals and the young ladies who earned Oktoberfest tiaras. Display cases at the museum hold commemorative mugs, buttons and hat pins. Other memorabilia include shot ...Read more