A poke bonnet was a type of straw hat popular with ladies in the 1880s, made popular again in Godey’s Lady’s Book which Laura very likely saw.
These Happy Golden Years featured much more about fashion of the era than the previous books, with Laura sewing a new wardrobe that would serve her as she transitioned to a young woman and then a married woman.
The poke bonnet Laura wore was a sage green color and featured blue silk lining. She earned the money for the hat by doing work for Miss Bell at the seamstress shop, and it was Miss Bell who made the hat for Laura.
Then, Laura unwrapped her hat. Carrie sighed with delight when she saw it.
It was a sage-green, rough straw, in poke-bonnet shape. It completely covered Laura’s head and framed her face with its flaring brim. It was lined with shirred silk, blue. Wide blue ribbons tied under her left ear and held the bonnet securely in place.
The blue of the lining, the blue ribbon bow, and the blue neck ribbon, exactly matched the blue of Laura’s eyes.
- Chapter 19 The Brown Poplin, These Happy Golden Years
While the original poke bonnet Laura wore as a young woman no longer exists unfortunately. But those with a little bit of sewing skill can take a straw poke bonnet available today and make some adjustments to match Laura’s poke bonnet.
To make this like Laura’s poke bonnet, you need to line the inside with blue silk (or other blue fabric if you prefer not to use the more expensive silk), and swap out the brown ribbon ties to blue ones.