Tuesday, 6 August 2013

In the mood for a snood...

When you are interested in vintage clothing or even sew your own wardrobe after patterns from the 40s or 50s, you sooner or later are confronted with the question how to "dress" your hair. Of course you can wear a hat (more to that subject will follow). But if you prefer a more casual look or something simple, there's the snood. For some people a snood is a kind of loop worn as a scarf, for others it's a kind of net to put your hair in. Depending on which side of the great pond you live.

Snoods were not only worn in the late 30s and in the 40s, but are an accessory that was common even in medieval times.

There are many, many pictures that show women wearing such snoods. As in modern times, it was probably always a question of fashion, when snoods were worn or not, how big they were, combined with other head-dressing items as hats etc. Of course, these snoods always reflected always the status of the women that wore it.

I am sorry I cannot mention sources for these pictures, as I just dragged them to my desktop and forgot to copy the links... :-(

Medieval drawing showing woman with snood / hair net

Modern samples for Renaissance snoods

Snoods were again of fashion in the victorian age respectively during the Civil War era. Some early photo portraits show women with snoods.

And then, of course, one of the most famous women of the Civil War era, Miss Scarlet O'Hara (as a widow) in "Gone With The Wind"...

I think that the snood in those times still was also an accessory to cover the hair and therefore show some modesty and decency. Yes, uncovered hair was also regarded as unseemly or even indecent even in Western cultures - for women, of course.

This scene obviously was NOT decent at all. :-) Aaaw, how much I love this movie... It was shot in 1939, a time when this accessory became a fashionable and practical item again!

During the WW2 era,  many women worked in jobs usually done by men. But men were off to the war, and handling all those heavy machines in sometimes dangerous environments called for a solution to cover the women's hair. So the hair was save from being entangled in machines.

I can imagine that women soon realised that this could also be a nice item to vary their hairstyle. There are snoods in different types, colours, and they also offered a nice solution for "bad hair days".  Your hair always looks neat.

 Snoods could be fixed with a ribbon and bow...

...or only with hair pins for a more simple style.

There are even beaded snoods...

... and some with sequins or rhinestones for evening wear.

As crochet and knitting was much more common for women to make their own clothing and accessories than today, there was a huge variety of patterns for hats and of course for snoods. (If you're interested, you can find a lot of these patterns on Etsy.)

There were also finer versions available like this hair net.

There are also the more sophisticated snoods with hats or with headbands, also in smaller versions for chignons.

The last picture is a modern sample of a chignon snood for bridal wear.

And of course, many today Vintage lovers and pin-ups still wear snoods, matching their outfits! These two are from wonderful Kitten von Mew. Thanks. 

If you would like to make your own snood, there's a simple crochet pattern on Ravelry.

And some more will follow here on my blog - I found some lovely ones I would like to make and show to you!


  1. Really a snood is the fastest and most effective way to get a vintage look, I did two snoods in the past and I use them in windy days. Happy week, dear Lady.

    1. Rosy, thank you so much for your comment. I'm not so good at doing crochet, but I think it's worth trying. I hope I can show a picture soon. Kind regards to sunny Spain, Doris

  2. The snoods that Kitten Von Mew is wearing are courtesy of Arthelia's Attic on Etsy via www.artheliasattic.com


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