Hats on Broadway | Modern Millinery

Millinery Operations with Kristin Silverman


I knew I wanted to write this month about hats on Broadway. (The Tony Awards are June 11.) Well, The New York Times beat me to it. 

This is a pretty spectacular season for hats on Broadway, but one show in particular is making me geek out in a major way: War Paint. It stars Christine Ebersole and Patti Lupone as cosmetics titans Elizabeth Arden and Helena Rubinstein. Honestly I don’t know a ton about it. But I’m a lover of vintage hats, and this show has them by the score! (Pun slightly intended.)

War Paint promotional image. (Joan Marcus)

When I saw this photo, I knew Patti’s hat looked familiar. Sure enough:

Hats on Broadway | Modern Millinery
Sally Victor hat, 1938. Via The Met.

It’s clearly modeled on this vintage hat from The Met’s collection. Perfect!

I really can’t gush enough about the hats. I’m a Broadway fan, so I don’t exactly need a millinery inducement to see a musical. But I’m not joking when I say I would see this show for the hats alone!

Hats on Broadway | Modern Millinery
Patti Lupone and Christine Ebersole. (Photo by Joan Marcus)
Uh, Patti? Why don’t you just take that hat off your head and give it to me, okay?

The costume designer, Catherine Zuber, is on Instagram. And that’s more eye candy!


The hats were actually made by Arnold Levine and his team of milliners. Here’s a great article in the Daily News about a last minute new hat for the production!

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