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James Stewart's Hat (And Others) in VERTIGO

Discussion in 'Hats' started by Brad Bowers, Dec 28, 2004.

  1. Hats in "Vertigo"

    Enjoyed watching Vertigo tonight, as I hadn't seen it in years. I was surprised to see the hats in the film were still fairly wide-brimmed and tall of crown for the late 1950s. Really liked Jimmy Stewart's brown hat.

    There seemed to be a fair percentage of hat wearers in the film, but I wonder how much of that is accurate to real life? Would the costumers have gone to the trouble to equip the extras with hats reflecting real life? Or did extras provide their own wardrobe back then?

    Too bad the Sixties had to roll around and change everything! :(

  2. Here is the old thread.

    From what I have seen the lower crowned and skimpy brimmed hats came about in the Early 60's.
    The late 40's and early 50's had wider brimmed hats. There are always acceptions. The hats in Vertigo were period correct for 1958, 5 years later the average hat dimentions became much smaller. Watch the "Adventures of Superman" TV series which ran from 1951 to 1957 you can see alot of 50's hats. 5 years later the mod look caught on even more and you get the skimpy hats like the ones James Bond wore in Dr. No and From Russia With Love.
    Thankfully as time went by James Stewart always seemed to dress as though he walked out of the 1940's in many of his 50's and 60's films.
  3. Thanks, Matt. I forgot about that post. I was watching The Man Who Knew Too Much and noticed his grey hat looks exactly like my Borsalino, right down to the bent corner on the bow. I'd wager it was a Borsalino. The brown one from Vertigo also seemed like a Borsa. Maybe Jimmy was a Borsalino man?

  4. FWIW, I thought Kim Novak looked better as a brunette!

  5. Thats a great shot of Jimmy from Vertigo. I swear thats the same brown hat he wore in the Glenn Miller Story, bet it was his.
  6. Could very well be. I remember an interview that was shown on television a while back where the interviewer was looking inside one of Stewarts Cowboy hats and it had (I think) "James Stewart #2" on the sweatband. I think I recall Jimmy Stewart going on about how important it is to find the right hat that works with you. John Wayne was the same way... he wore the same hat in many films.
  7. I saw Vertigo on TCM again the other night and noticed that the Stewart character wore that great brown hat with both a brown suit and a blue one.

    I have no guess on the brand of hat and can make no observation other than thinking the edge looked neither bound nor welted. That comes under the category of "duh," doesn't it?

    PS. love the car; is that a DeSoto?
  8. scotrace

    scotrace Head Bartender Staff Member

    I think DeSoto is right

    But did you See Kim Novak's Jag? :)
  9. Interesting he wore the same or same type of fedora -- in those westerns made in the early 50's, he evidently preferred to wear the same cowboy hat in every film. One director had to talk him out of wearing it in a later film as it was getting pretty battered.


  10. Philadelphia Story

    I watched Philadelphia Story for the 47th time last night, but this is the first time I noticed the hats. To me this is the perfect fedora look, up there with the fedora Gable wears in It Happened One Night. Is there any info available on these hats? If AdventureBilt can replicate these, I'd buy them in a flash.

    (EDIT: I moved photos to a different site, because they weren't working on KodakGallery)


  11. jake_fink

    jake_fink Call Me a Cab

    I also love those hats in Philedelphia Story and (especially) that high-crowned wonder that Gable sprts in It Happened One Night. (Your pictures aren't working by the way - I had to click on the image box, choose prperties and then paste that into my address thingy to see them, anyway...), and I've also always loved the look of the hat and suits in Vertigo; I really like the way the brown and blue come together in Technicolor, though I've discovered it doesn't work so well in real colour... if I could just match that perfect Techinicolor grey-blue....

    Stewart looks great in a hat. He is tall and lean which is, I think, the perfect physique for a hat. Not that other body types are imperfect physiques for a hat, ;) but he looks great in a hat, and he is tall and lean, so there you go.

    Edited to add: Okay, now they're working.
  12. Fedora

    Fedora Vendor

    I can replicate most hats, as long as they have raw brims. I am limited to the raw brimmed hats.

    Here is one that I made recently.


    And here is what I was attemping to copy.

  13. The FBI Story

    You need to watch the FBI Story, as it is a great Hat movie. Jimmy Stewart has several hats through out the film, they change as to time and location. Every man wears a hat practically in this film.

    Ithink this is still only on VHS tape, the DVD hasn't been done yet. I hope they do it soon, I want to see it WS.

    "Don't shoot, G-man!"
  14. Ah, good taste in hats there! I love Stewart's hats in all his movies mainly from the late 30's to the late 40's but, you know they didn't change much into the 50's.

    I believe that his hats were Stetson's or maybe Dobb's. I remember seeing an old hat ad from 1946 with Stewart on it. I'm going to say that it was a Stetson ad. Maybe for Whippets? Yeah, I think Stewart was a Whippet man.

    The hat you see Gable wear in his early films are nearly imposable to replicate. If you're a size 6 1/8 -7 1/4 then you'd be better off finding a vintage one, save some money and get the genuine article. I don't know much about AdventureBilt but, I'm sure the shape of the crown will be hard to replicate. Also, Gable's hat has a Cavanaugh edge that I can see. Fedora, if you learn to make the "Cavanaugh edge" you'd offer something that no one else does! ;)


    It Happened One Night....

  15. Michaelson

    Michaelson One Too Many

    That particular hat was made by Peter's Brothers of Ft. Worth TX and was one of Stewarts personal favorites.

    Regards! Michaelson
  16. indyjim

    indyjim Familiar Face

    Fedora, your copy looks better than the original, IMO. I'd love to have that hat!
  17. Really?

    This I'd love to see. (not being sarcastic or mean) I have a 1930's Dobb's 5th Ave that is one of the softest felts I've ever, ever, touched. It's super light weight too and it almost feels like I'm not even wearing a hat! One of my finer 30's fedoras!

    A photo of me wearing it....


    More photos upon request;).

  18. So, the top photo is of the hat you made? If so, it's a very fine hat! I'd say you did very very well.

  19. Fedora

    Fedora Vendor

    I have a 75 gram portugal body that is with Mr. Riser out there in Ca. If anyone is interested in what this fine felt looks like, and feels like, look him up. :) The only vintage body that I have seen that comes close in looks and fineness of felt are the vintage beaver dress hats. It knocks most vintage felts out of the water. IMHO. Fedora

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