12.1 Straw hats: an Italian glory
It was in April of 1907 that the battleship Roma was christened, and on that occasion summer hats showed themselves off. Straw hats became an Italian glory since the straw industry had been active in Tuscany since the end of 1700’s.
They were also called Maggiostrina because it was in the month of May (Maggio) that people began to wear them, and then removed them with the onset of mild temperatures during harvest.
But this firm, oval, fat based hat reached its artistic consecration in French impressionist paintings. Manet and Renoir depicted images of the early century Gentlemen that rode boats on the river and attended outings wearing what they called Canotier.
Feather felts were of light shades and very adapt to guard oneself from the summer heat.