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2005/114/9-4 Hat, mans, straw / [cotton], worn by Heather Waddell of Moray Millinery, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, maker unknown, [Florence, Italy], 1960-1969. Click to enlarge.

Hat worn by Heather Waddell of Moray Millinery

Made
Hat, mans, straw / [cotton], worn by Heather Waddell of Moray Millinery, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, maker unknown, [Florence, Italy], 1960-1969

Man's straw boating hat with high crown and slightly upturned brim, trimmed with printed green, blue and white [cotton] scarf wihich runs around the crown, through the brim and around neck.

Summary

Object No.

2005/114/9-4

Object Statement

Hat, mans, straw / [cotton], worn by Heather Waddell of Moray Millinery, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, maker unknown, [Florence, Italy], 1960-1969

Physical Description

Hat, mans, straw / [cotton], worn by Heather Waddell of Moray Millinery, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, maker unknown, [Florence, Italy], 1960-1969

Man's straw boating hat with high crown and slightly upturned brim, trimmed with printed green, blue and white [cotton] scarf wihich runs around the crown, through the brim and around neck.

Marks

No label

Dimensions

Height

300 mm

Production

Made

Notes

The maker of the hat is unknown. The hat was purchased in Florence, Italy in the 1960s.

History

Notes

This Italian straw hat was puchased by Heather Waddell in Florence in the 1960s.

Heather Waddell studied millinery with J L Normoyle in Sydney before establishing Moray Millinery at 71 York St Sydney in 1932 (initially in partnership with Norman Shephard.). The business's name reflected Waddell's Scottish ancestry . Initially it operated as a millinery workroom employing a mix of men and women in various roles from stockroom workers to blockers and milliners; and including one small boy who wore a bottle green uniform to deliver the hat orders around Sydney. (David Waddell recalls his father Selwyn being approached by a policeman in the Forbes Hotel in York St, who informed him Moray Millinery's delivery boy had kicked a policeman on the bottom as he travelled by on the tram.) Heather's husband Selwyn Waddell had his own business in the same building making artificial flowers for millinery.

Heather Waddell designed the hats working closely with her millinery team; some like Jean Carroll and Betty Viazim became well known names in Australian millinery working across fashion, theatre, opera and ballet. Waddell also travelled to Europe annually, sourcing hats in Florence and Paris to retail in Australia and styles to copy and adapt for the Australian market. (David Waddell noted that European styles and colours were often considered too extreme by Australian consumers).

During World War Two the introduction of rationing and war effort priorities dramatically affected the fashion industry, cutting off French imports, diverting fabric into uniforms and placing restrictions on style and trims. Moray Millinery responded by taking on war work, finishing the Australian Women's army beret's with a leather edging and badge.

Post-war they went back to supplying department stores like David Jones with a wide range of styles and price points (Today Moray Millinery concentrate on the high end of the market and sell exclusively through David Jones 7th Floor). In the late 1950s the workrooms moved to a 'tumbled down' four floor building in Sussex St, Sydney . Heather received an introduction to Lord and Taylor, a prestigious US boutique near Sakks Fifth Avenue. The buyer at first exclaimed' Why would I want to buy hats from Australia when I can get them from Paris', however on seeing Heather's designs she was impressed enough to place an order. (Moray only supplied hats to the United States for a short time as they were unable to keep up with the volumes required by Lord and Taylor who would place orders for 70 examples of the one hand-made hat.)

Heather Waddell's son David joined Moray Millinery in the 1950's assisting his mother with all aspects of the business and learning millinery techniques on the job. In 1979 they moved into the Strand Arcade, Pitt St, Sydney, Heather Waddell retired and David took over the business. Times were changing with many of the department stores they had supplied closing down, hairstyles were also becoming more elaborate and the days of compulsory hat wearing were at an end, even the Catholic Church declared that the congregation were no longer expected to wear hats. The millinery market became more specialised and in the 1990s David Waddell was approached by David Jones to take over the 7th Floor millinery showroom retailing exclusive designs alongside the designer boutiques retailing prestigious international labels.

Cite this Object

Harvard

Hat worn by Heather Waddell of Moray Millinery 2020, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 19 September 2020, <https://ma.as/359710>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/359710 |title=Hat worn by Heather Waddell of Moray Millinery |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=19 September 2020 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}