Irma G. Bowen Historic Clothing Collection


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Date Created



Women's costume accessories; Worn costume accessories; Headgear


Silk, velvet, buckram, wire, artificial flowers, rhinestones, brass


1890s. Light brown oval toque coming to a point in front and back, with the front slightly curving downward and the back slightly curving up. Constructed on a buckram and wire frame, and with no brim.

The toque is covered with two lengths of a 7.6 cm / 3 in. wide light brown textured silk ribbon, woven with a ribbed edge for contrast. The lengths are sewn together edge to edge and laid smoothly over the buckram. A band of brown velvet, pleated lengthwise, encircles the entire edge. Another band of the same velvet is twisted decoratively and sewn in place above it.

The top of the toque is embellished with the same ribbon and artificial flower accents. At the front on the right side, two lengths of the ribbon are looped and folded over each other in such a way as to display the contrasting ribbon edge three times. The loop is reinforced with wire inside so that it does not lie flat against the cap. Next to this at the left, the ribbon is shaped into a six inch long rabbit-ear-like element wired to stand high and slanting toward the back; the ribbon between the loop and the tall element is twisted around more brown velvet to form a decorative knot which is finished with a large rhinestone brooch.

Four fabric flowers in cream and yellow emerge above the velvet knot in front, more flow across the left side of the bonnet to the back, where a single strip of velvet wraps around the velvet pleated and twisted band, with two more flowers above it. Green wire and plastic stems run from the front to the back at the left side above the velvet and cross the top at back. Six small hatpins with double brass rings are scattered around the edge, seemingly holding down some of the decorative elements. Hand-sewn.


Length: 22.9 cm / 9 in. (length of crown front to back)
Depth: 6.4 cm / 2.5 in. (depth of crown)

Museum Number



University of New Hampshire Library


Astrida Schaeffer, photographer/curator

Date Digitized


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License


The Irma G. Bowen Historic Clothing Collection digital catalog was produced by the UNH Library Digital Collection Initiative, supported in part by a grant from the Mooseplate program and New Hampshire State Council on the Arts. Additional funding provided by the E. Ruth Buxton Stephenson Memorial Fund.
Photography copyright, Astrida Schaeffer.


Women’s garments, Accessories worn, Head, Headgear, Hats, Bonnets (hats), Toques (caps), 1890s, United States, Crown (hat component), Silk (textile), Buckram, Wire, Ribbon (material), Artificial flowers, Brooch (pins), Rhinestone (paste), Hatpin (pins), Brass (alloy), Velvet (fabric weave), Pleats (textile component), Bow (costume accessories), Light brown (color), Brown (color), Cream (color), Allow (color), Green (color), Hand-sewn


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