Obit of the Day: Who Wants to Be a Milliner?
Raymond Hudd did. The son of a Michigan farmer, Raymond Huddlestun, became a legend in hat making, designing outrageous headgear for the likes of Joan Crawford and Phyllis Diller. Ms. Diller owned 500 Hudd hats.
Hudd’s creations often incorporated natural elements including branches, leaves, and vegetables. (OOTD found a hat that appeared to hold four potatoes.) He had two tiers of hats: inexpensive “Huddettes” and his “big hats” that ranged in price from just under $18 and went “as high as your blood pressure.”
With the signature violet stitched inside each hat, in honor of his mother, Hudd felt that wearing something upon one’s head was not just an accessory but “an attitude.” “A hat is confidence.”
Random note: Chicago is something of a haven for hat makers. Ben “Mad Hatter” Green-Field stunned the world with his creations in the decades before Hudd.
(Image of a Hudd hat courtesy of fellow tumblr, hoodoothatvoodoo.)