Sunday, 12 June 2011

Medieval crazy women's hats

The hats worn by rich women during the Middle Ages were very artistic and complex. If you want to know more about the many types I suggest you visit . Here you can order custom made medieval hats, and read about them. A lot of the pictures in this entry are from that website.
In an earlier entry I wrote about the hair do and showed a couple of pictures of hats, this will be about hats only.

The Hennin was a tall construction and could be formed like a cone, two horns or just a tall hat. Often a white veil was attached to it and I reckon it belongs primarily to the 15th century. When wearing a hennin the hair would rarely show.

To show you some of the reconstruction of these I have a few examples from

There also were a heart shaped and a two horned hennin:


And here reconstructed:

There were a lot of other types but the two others that I would like to show you here are the Toque (12th-13th century) and the Crispinette (1300-1500) The Toque is a bit less pompous than the Hennin and looks more like a normal hat with or without a veil.

The crispinette (or caul) is often worn by movie medieval princesses such as Princess Isabelle in "Brave Heart" or princess Amidala in "Star Wars" (okay not medieval movie, but still). It consisted of golden nets around two buns of hair on each side of the head.

Now, finding a place to get such a hat or to make it yourself might be quite a project. I think the hats are beautiful, yet a little crazy and I am not sure I would like to wear one for my entire wedding day. It is fun to see what you considered to be beautiful in those days compared to the ideals we live by today. So if you really want to be the bride that goes all the way then one of these designs might be what you want, if not, well then you can sit, smile and wonder about these creative and special hats. It was a time unlike no other, and the female headdress is one of the finest testimonies to this statement.


  1. This helped me with a Project i had Thank you so much! :)

  2. I think ear crispinette can be very pretty :)
    If you are interested in hairdos - I made one photoproject where I myself recreated hair from the portrait of Simonetta Vespucci, it is early renaissance in Italy- ( XV century ).I just love the painting. Good luck with your planing :)
    Well, I don't mean to spam, so no need to post my comment, but check it out - what can be done with modern hair ;)

    1. I decided to post your comment because that is an amasing hairdo! Medieval hair isn't really that exciting, but renæssance hair is amasing bridal inspiration :)

  3. Happy you liked it :) I'm fascineted by Simonetta's portrait. I made a copy of it during my art studies and dreamed of recreating the hair in real. It is hard to find same hair volume to be able to make it - but dreadlocks gave that possibility. My model was very happy to find herself in new role, and promised to come to me for her bridal hairdo, hahhaa. I myself think that it is nice alternative for "dreadlock brides".

  4. It isn't princess Amidala. She was senator by the time she wore the romantic looking crespinettes. You're thinking of Princess Leia, which it's more commonly compared to. Even recently at an SCA event, a young kid called me Princess Leia as a joke.

  5. I'm doing a study on medieval times for a fictional book I'm going to write and this helped a lot! Thanks!