Sequined 'Flapper' Rhinestone Trim Cloche Hat and Matching 'Roaring Twenties' Headband

This example illustrates two reproduction items newly created from an authentic 1920's sequined dress. One item is a hat and the other its matching counterpart, a fancy brow band similar to those worn in accessorizing glamorous evening gowns in the 1920's to early 1930's. Both pieces were formed over a vintage 22 inch hat block, so they are sized correctly and duplicate well the 'look' of similar originals.

Cloche hat styles may vary somewhat, but to be called a 'cloche' a hat should primarily be somewhat bell-shaped ('cloche' means 'bell' in French), fit closely to the head and low over the wearer's forehead. In this listing note how the same decorative component removed from one dress was easily able to take on new life as two different 'vintage-look' contemporary designs.

Reproduction garments and accessories frequently are made for theater productions and historical masquerades. They may also appeal to reenactors or those who participate in such things as murder mystery dinner theater fun at the local bed & breakfast. It wouldn't be cost effective to subject fragile and potentially valuable authentic garments to frequent wear or subject them to stress or stains. There are companies who specialize in reproduction garments or reproduction clothing patterns for every style and age imaginable.

For the most part, these types of garments and accessories could not pass the close inspection of a knowledgeable collector, as most will easily spot modern methods and components used to make theater-type accoutrements. They would know, for instance, that the zig zag stitching a modern sewing machine can apply should not be present in an 'Elizabethan era' gown.

But, when more primitive methods and authentic components clearly belonging to a specific era are used, the line between what is old costuming and what is new can become blurred and much less simple to deduce. Antique and vintage pieces frequently are found to be too badly damaged to be of interest to a collector on their own. So it has become common for salvaged fragments from dresses, hats or jewelry to be incorporated into stylized garments or accessories for everyday or theater wear. The problem is, while its original creator may have sold a reproduction item for exactly what it is, representing it to be no more than new costuming, these kinds of articles become particularly troublesome later. On the secondary market they can more easily be represented as something they are not because the components used in their making are 'right' for the period of clothing they mimic.

Collectors should always be vigilant and remain aware of this issue.

Item ID: 2007RP000190

Modern Reproductions, Fakes and Fantasies

Ruby Lane, Comparisons, CA   

Illustrations and Characteristics for Help in Identifying Many Confusing New Items

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