Thursday, January 22, 2015

Bes-Ben Hats

One of the most creative milliners of all time was Benjamin B. Green-Field, a Chicago born and raised businessman who in 1919 along with his sister Bessie, created the famous label: Bes-Ben. Their colorful, whimsical, yet elegant hats adorned Hollywood celebrities and Chicago Society ladies alike.

In the early 1940's "Chicago's Mad Hatter" began to incorporate unusual items into his hats including animals, bugs, fruit, and even doll furniture. The following photographs are just a small sample of his body of work.

Sea Horses courtesy

Dogs on a Spiral Hat courtesy

Photo courtesy

Rooster Crown Hat with Veil courtesy

Doll Furniture Hat courtesy Lallu Chic on Pinterest

The Couture Touch salutes Bes-Ben with this whimsical concoction based on the milliner's famous decorated spiral hats. A vintage berry topper from The Hat Bar of Marshall Field's & Company was used to create this delightful chapeau for Integrity's Cocoa Crisp Gene Marshall. Top and necklace are from Ashton Drake.

The inspiration for Miss Marshall's hat.

Links of Interest:

"Hats Off to Bes-Ben"   Chicago Tribune article written by Sharon Stangenes, December 21, 1988.

Benjamin B. Green-Field Foundation   Includes biography and more photos of Bes-Ben hats.


  1. Amazing designs, I really like this style! Your version is lovely!

    1. Thank you Night Owl. I love his work too! Melissa

  2. Very dramatic. Love your DIY project.. Easy to do.