Sunday, 15 September 2013

The Beret

The Beret or the "flat-cap" was a favoured type of hat by both men and women during the Tudor times. Normally an expensive fabric would have been used to make this hat such as velvet or silk and preferable in a lush colour or in simple black. They could also be lined with either silk or satin but it was not absolutely necessary. However some sort of decoration was an absolute must whether it was a plume, a brooch or even colourful feathers.
The entire style of the Beret is made to fall to one side but in Europe it was not worn tipped to one side. Henry VIII was fond of this style and has been painted wearing a Beret several times - he would often choose to have it decorated with precious stones.

The Beret was only to be worn by the highest classes of society but there was another coarser version (the Statue Cap) available for the commoners. One of the manufacturers of these Berets was Thomas Bell who made a name for himself through this trade and became the Mayor of Gloucestershire. Here are some examples of the Tudor Beret:

                                 Charles Brandon
A young Henry VIII wearing a beret
decorated with golden jewellery
An etching of Lady Richmond

Catherine Parr appears to wear a Beret on top
of her bejewelled hood
Like father, like son - Edward VI wearing a Beret
in the same style as Henry VIII