Hats Hats Hats!
7 November, 2023 - 31 March, 2024
Welcome to Bexhill Museum’s current special exhibition Hats Hats Hats! the result of a happy and productive collaboration between Bexhill Museum and Queen’s University Bader College in Herstmonceux.
The exhibition showcases the incredibly important, versatile, and wide-ranging collection of hats that Bexhill Museum has in its possession – from hats for babies to grandparents; from worn linen to fine silk; from casual workwear to hats for once in a lifetime event…
Many of the hats selected here were made in England, some made abroad, brought to England and years later donated to the museum as part of larger collections. All these hats have their own unique stories, some better known than others.
Bexhill Museum curator Julian Porter, Georgina Bradley, Costume Curator and Dr Ruth M. Cereceda, Senior Lecturer in Art History at Bader College, combined their experience working with art & fashion researchers and the college’s long-standing experimental & active learning programme.
The resulting project – Banish the Backlog: Bexhill Museum’s pre-1930’s hat collection research programme entailed cataloguing the museum’s pre-1930’s hat collection. Post grad student Carolyn Kane worked through over 60 boxes from the costume store.
Of the initial 60, 31 boxes were eventually selected, containing over 80 hats that have now been catalogued, including 21 new accessions. This has helped the museum with reducing its cataloguing backlog – while creating the collection on display for Hats, Hats, Hats!
The exhibition runs until March 2024.