Each biennium, Chi Omega Sisters from across the country come together to conduct business meetings, facilitate engaging programming, and create a space that encourages plenty of time for invaluable Sisterhood. Of course, no Convention is complete without plenty of celebration… and no celebration is complete without a little party favor!
Over the years, delegates have left Convention with some special keepsakes to remind them of these irreplaceable moments with Sisters.
Many Sisters wore hat bands in the early 1900s to make their outfits a bit more formal, and at the 1901 Convention in Little Rock, Arkansas, these special accessories were the Convention favor! These Chi Omega hat bands are extremely rare as there were only 15 delegates at the 1901 Convention who received one.
Hat pins became popular during the Victorian era, an age when women rarely left their homes without a hat. Encrusted with jewels and long feathers, many hat pins were high fashion statements, but their function was primarily practical: to prevent women’s hats from blowing or tumbling into a dirty street. Hat pins steadily rose as a fashion accessory until WWII, when hats began to fall out of fashion.
Today, millions of hat pins are on the market as collector’s items.
Hat pins varied in length, anywhere from 3-12 inches and generally the bigger the hat, the bigger the pin. In the early 1900s, hat pins were given several times as Convention favors.
At the 1930 Convention a pencil, about four inches long, was gifted to delegates during the Convention Banquet.
They were so beloved that one delegate wrote, “How the girls who stayed home will envy those lucky delegates when their bags emerge from the train! Then, the favors – adorable black and white pencils with ‘1895 – Chi Omega – 1930’ printed upon them in silver! Immediately they are called into service and a succession of autographs is demanded as the little books travel around the tables.”
In 1978, Convention was held at the Greenbrier, as it was for many years. Convention delegates left with a beautiful marble paperweight adorned with a raised green seal commemorating the occasion.
In the 1980s, a round metal box was gifted to each Convention delegate. The detail on each one highlighted the Chi Omega insignia and an intricate owl perched on the Chi.
Beginning in the 1990s, tote bags became a standard Convention favor as it supplied a bag for delegates to carry their programming packets and schedules from session to session with them. Then, when Convention was over, they would continue to carry their Chi Omega pride with them to the office, to school, or to the store!