Glossary of cap terms in the 18th C context. 

I have tried to link these to examples or instructions.

Bonnet : A head covering with a large stiffened brim framing the face, worn over the cap.  18th C Notebook: bonnet examples.

Brim: an extended headpiece used in bonnets, made wide enough to come to the edges of the face, and stiffened with board or slats.

Cap: a cloth head covering, usually white linen, created in many styles, worn by most women most of the time, in the 18th C.

Caul (or crown or body): the roughly circular / semicircular gathered back piece of the cap

Cotton: a less common cloth, more expensive than linen. In White for caps. Comes in many weights and colors.

Hat: a straw or felt head covering, worn over the cap, with style and decorations appropriate to one’s station and the occasion.

  Thumbnail for version as of 14:57, 9 August 2009

Portrait of Juliana Dorotea Henck, married name Schröder (1733-1792) c 1750

Headpiece (or headband): the piece(es) of the cap attached to the front of the caul, of various shapes. Sometimes shaped to create lappets.

Lappet: Long rabbit-eared shaped cap piece.  The lappets can be created by extentions of the headpiece, or of the ruffle. Made of cloth or lace.  The lappets are sometimes worn tied or pinned on top of the head.

Linen: the most common cloth, available in many weights and colors, made from flax. For caps, nearly always white.

Nape Ruffle: a ruffle at the nape of the neck. Sometimes a separate piece, and sometimes an extension of a ruffle from the front of the cap.

Ruffle (or frill:) a decoration of cloth or lace attached to the cap (usually on the front edge of the headpiece), often framing the face.

Stroke gather: similar to smocking, a gathering stitch in which the gathered cloth is caught in back of or  between 2 layers of ungathered cloth and sewn down. In stroke gathers, each individual gather is sewn in place from both the right side and the wrong side of the garment. See Sharon Burnston’s article and directions.

Whipped gather: a hand stitch that rolls, hems and gathers the cloth in one stitch.  One hand rolls the thinnest possible edge, and the other hand moves the needle in circles over the roll. Exactly even stitches allow the cloth to be bunched up as needed to create ruffles, or stretched out for a flat finished edge.  See Amber Mendenhall’s video tutorial on this and other stitches.