Behold the Hat
Hats are an accessory that consistently floats in and out of fashion. The history of hats is an interesting subject; they began as functional items and evolved into art pieces and status symbols. Today, hats are worn sparingly, but when worn, they make a strong style statement.
One reason women often choose to go hat-less is because we aren’t sure how to choose a flattering hat or how to wear it or what to wear with it. If you feel timid about hat-wearing, begin with something understated. Wear the hat for a short period of time or to a casual function—maybe to a coffee shop or for a nighttime stroll. To achieve a flattering look, your hat should complement the form of your face. You may need to try on several styles to determine which shape best flatters your face and reflects your personality. Hats can change the spirit of your outfit. You can choose a playful, dramatic, sophisticated, serious, cozy, or glamorous vibe.
There are many, many styles of hats. Beanies are crocheted or knitted, and worn tightly on the head for warmth. They often have a pom-pom attached to the top. Baseball caps have a round crown with a forward-projecting bill. They may be made from fabric or leather and often express the interest of the wearer. The cloche is a bell-shaped hat made popular by Coco Chanel. She wore this style to flatter her short haircut. The fedora comes in many shapes and sizes, with medium or wide brims. It is defined by the crease in the crown. The French style beret is often made with wool. It is rimless with one flattened side. The pillbox hat has small upright sides, a flat crown, and no brim. A cowboy hat can express personal style with added buckles, bows, or tassels. Hats that are not currently in fashion include the half-hat, the halo hat, and the mushroom hat. Another interesting hat-of-the-past is the lingerie hat. Worn during the Edwardian era, it was made of lightweight muslin in white or ivory. It was a symbol of wealth as it had to be washed after each wear—which required maids. These hats were worn to garden parties and other fancy affairs. They were adorned with large cabbage roses, daisies, poppies, birds and their nests. Ribbon streamers were attached to flow behind the lady as she walked.
Hats no longer reflect our social status, but they do reflect our sense of style. Don’t let hat-wearing intimidate you. Hats are appropriate for all occasions: walks in the park, church services, formal gatherings, trips to the market, and afternoon soireés. In addition to the functionality of keeping your head warm in the winter and protected from the sun in the summer, wearing a hat will give you instant panache.