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  • Hat
    Balenciaga, Cristóbal, born 1895 - died 1972
  • Enlarge image


  • Place of origin:

    Paris (made)

  • Date:

    1963 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Balenciaga, Cristóbal, born 1895 - died 1972 (designer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Woven straw, grosgrain, velvet

  • Credit Line:

    Bequeathed by Mrs Fern Bedaux

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Fashion, Room 40, case B24

Physical description

Hat of woven green straw trimmed with a pin that has a bobble on each end. It is unlined and has a hatband with a grosgrain back and green velvet front.

Place of Origin

Paris (made)


1963 (made)


Balenciaga, Cristóbal, born 1895 - died 1972 (designer)

Materials and Techniques

Woven straw, grosgrain, velvet

Historical context note

This object is part of the collection of Mrs Fern Bedaux, given to the museum by Miss E Hanley, the heiress and niece of Mrs Bedaux. Mrs Bedaux purchased her whole wardrobe regularly from Balenciaga and the collection was very large; some was kept by Miss Hanley, some send to the Costume Museum in Bath; and some was received by the V&A.

Mrs Bedaux was the very wealthy widow of American millionaire office systems pioneer Charles Bedaux. Mr and Mrs Bedaux lived in the sixteenth century Chateau de Cand in France. The Duke of Windsor was married there after his abdication as King Edward VIII in 1936.

Descriptive line

Hat of woven straw, designed by Cristóbal Balenciaga, Paris, Spring / Summer 1963

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Hommage à Balenciaga. Lyon : Musée Historique des Tissus, 1985

Labels and date

‘Balenciaga’s hats are an integral part of his fashion,’ reported the French fashion review Jardin des modes in 1961. They ensure ‘that volumes are balanced and the silhouette is perfectly finished off.’ Fairly conventional ensembles were often paired with a striking hat which lifted the whole look and made it appear more avant-garde. The client could buy the whole ensemble or leave the hat if it was too daring. The designs for hats were as fiercely protected as those for dresses. The police commissioner stamped the official sketches of the hats to protect them from being copied.

Green Straw Hat
Bali buntal straw
Cristóbal Balenciaga, Paris,1963
Bequeathed by Mrs Fern Bedaux
V&A: T.755-1972 [12/05/2017]






Fashion; Accessories; Hats & headwear; Women's clothes


Textiles and Fashion Collection

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