A bright and shiny new hat!

Updated 3/14 4:13pm

Hello there. Welcome back. We have a new hat, and oh “watt a hat” it is. Yes, we know, we have already used that expression.

If you follow us you know last year, and continuing into this year, Mrs Farrell has created a series of lampshade hats.

First there was Cara, the big and beautiful domed lampshade hat. Next up was Filamena, the oblong lampshade hat decorated with light bulb filaments and suspended from a lightbulb socket (yes, really!). After that, came Electra a stacked 50s (60s?) inspired lampshade hat. This was followed by what we thought was Mrs Farrell’s final adventure into the series — the ruffled hourglass lampshade hat called Lumina.

Do we dare now to use that old saying, “last but not least” (how can anybody be sure this is the last?), here is another. Meet Edison.


The Edison hat design with gold lightbulbs created by ©Vivian Grant Farrell exclusively for Hattingdon®.
The Edison hat design with gold lightbulbs created by ©Vivian Grant Farrell exclusively for Hattingdon®.

This lightbulb hat design has been percolating in Mrs Farrell’s vivid imagination for some time. She finally gave in and created it.

We were going to name it Tesla until it was pointed out that although there is a light bulb connection to the name Tesla there may be some confusion for those who automatically think car. Okay. Sigh. After a bit of deliberating, we chose Edison (no brainteaser as to why there), but we call her Eddie. (more on Edison at the end)

What is amazing is that Mrs Farrell made this hat first with a cap. But she couldn’t get the bowler hat she originally envisioned out of her mind. So she sat herself down and recreated the design replacing the cap with a bowler hat. Guess what? Because there was a debate raging on who actually invented the lightbulb we looked Edison up on the worldwide web. Look!

Inventor and businessman Thomas Edison. Source: Independent.ie.
Inventor and businessman Thomas Edison. Source: Independent.ie.

It never entered Mrs Farrell’s head to see what kind of hats Mr. Edison wore before she began creating. Truly!

Mrs Farrell also created the Eddie hat with brightly coloured light bulbs.

The Edison hat design with neon lightbulbs created by ©Vivian Grant Farrell exclusively for Hattingdon®.
The Edison hat design with neon lightbulbs created by ©Vivian Grant Farrell exclusively for Hattingdon®.

These designs will surely generate a “hatful of smiles”, don’t you think? Ha ha ha! Hope you love them.

Which is your favourite?

Hattingdon & Co in Hattingdon's signature cartoon font.

The Invention of the Light Bulb

Before anyone writes us about the true inventor of the light bulb, here’s a bit of history. Only a bit!

The electric light, one of the everyday conveniences that most affects our lives, was not “invented” in the traditional sense in 1879 by Thomas Alva Edison, although he could be said to have created the first commercially practical incandescent light. He was neither the first nor the only person trying to invent an incandescent light bulb. In fact, some historians claim there were over 20 inventors of incandescent lamps prior to Edison’s version.

However, Edison is often credited with the invention because his version was able to outstrip the earlier versions because of a combination of three factors: an effective incandescent material, a higher vacuum than others were able to achieve and a high resistance that made power distribution from a centralized source economically viable. [italics added]

In 1802, Humphry Davy invented the first electric light. He experimented with electricity and invented an electric battery. When he connected wires to his battery and a piece of carbon, the carbon glowed, producing light. His invention was known as the Electric Arc lamp. And while it produced light, it didn’t produce it for long and was much too bright for practical use.

Over the next seven decades, other inventors also created “light bulbs” but no designs emerged for commerical application.

In 1878, Thomas Edison began serious research into developing a practical incandescent lamp and on October 14, 1878, Edison filed his first patent application for “Improvement In Electric Lights”. However, he continued to test several types of material for metal filaments to improve upon his original design and by Nov 4, 1879, he filed another U.S. patent for an electric lamp using “a carbon filament or strip coiled and connected … to platina contact wires.”

Although the patent described several ways of creating the carbon filament including using “cotton and linen thread, wood splints, papers coiled in various ways,” it was not until several months after the patent was granted that Edison and his team discovered that a carbonized bamboo filament could last over 1200 hours.

This discovery marked the beginning of commercially manufactured light bulbs and in 1880, Thomas Edison’s company, Edison Electric Light Company began marketing its new product.

Learn more at bulbs.com »



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