As a wearer and lover of hats I’m amazed at how many women discount them as an accessory of choice. Yet hats are ideal for adding spark, style, and sophistication to any plain or dreary outfit. Even self-proclaimed Fashionistas will often overlook hats as chic add-ons; investing in ones worn solely for weather protection instead of fashion hats meant for style and prestige. If your nature is to be casual or reserved, a hat may actually enhance your privacy by keeping you ‘protected.’ My passion for hats along with my mission to inspire a hat trend among modern women led me to devote this blog post to hats. Once you appreciate the practicality, originality, and totality a hat can bring to your overall appearance— you too may become a hat evangelist. Avoid thinking of them as foreign, intimidating, or cumbersome pieces; and remember to observe proper etiquette when wearing a hat. As soon as you define the role of a hat in your wardrobe you will be excited to explore their endless possibilities.
Use hats to…
• Beautify messy, limp, or unshampooed hair
• Hide dark or gray roots
• Add height to your body as usually done with high-heels
• Emphasize your eyes
• Incorporate personality and flair into an otherwise ‘blah’ outfit
• Create a signature look for yourself
• Balance the look and style of your shoes for a complete & polished look (think of hats and shoes as bookend accessories)
Choose hats to accentuate, balance & camouflage…
• Wide Brimmed & Oversized Floppy hats offer the most protection from weather elements, but also camouflage large ears and long necks. Glamorous, dramatic, and voluminous in shape and size, these are a perfect option for balancing curvy silhouettes. Choose wide brim hats for lounging by the pool while sipping a frothy drink. Wear oversized floppy hats under long, loose curls with flowy maxi dresses for a romantic, retro-chic look.
• Fedora hats gained their name from Sarah Bernhardt’s 1882 play ‘Victorien Sardou,’ in which she also starred as the heroine, Princess Fedora. The narrow (2-2.5 inches) brim of a Fedora makes it a classic, understated hat option. Wear your Fedora tilted to one side in order to camouflage asymmetrical features or eyebrows. Tilt it forward for a mysterious and seductive look, as well as for camouflaging a protruding nose. Pair a Fedora with a tailored suit, dress, or trench coat for a perfectly refined image.
• Cowgirl hats are worn by women who choose to accentuate strength and ruggedness— though they are ironically interpreted as sultry and sexy. The high-crowned structure of this hat adds inches to your height, thereby accentuating slender physiques and balancing molded ones. Throw on a cowgirl hat whenever you want to kick your t-shirt and jeans up a notch or with a cami-top and tiered skirt for a look that is edgy yet relaxed.
• Baseball Caps & Visors are the natural choice for hat atheists. Baseball caps and visors are easy to throw on for a quick supermarket run or trip to the hairdresser. Gender-neutral and universal for pairing with casual wear or active wear, these are flattering for all face shapes and silhouettes. Baseball caps and visors are ideal for comfort, protection, and versatility. Invest in baseball caps or visors without emblems or sports logos in denim and velour fabrics or classic plaid and tartan prints to combine a bit of urban with upscale.
• Cloche hats emerged in the 1920’s and gained popularity alongside flapper dresses. The bell shape and snug fit of a cloche hat make it a perfect solution for camouflaging ears and foreheads that protrude. Short hairstyles can be neatly tucked under this hat and paired with a drop-waist dress to achieve a roaring 20’s vintage feel. Cloche hats complement women with fine facial features and petite silhouettes. Add a gemstone or floral pin to accentuate and personalize this classic feminine look.
• Bucket hats are soft with a downwards sloping brim which offers moderate shade from the sun. Favored by competition archers and fishermen, bucket hats provide a cool and sporty option for wearers who prefer to do without the fussiness or drama of wide-brimmed and floppy hats. Typically constructed from heavy-duty fabrics like denim and canvas, bucket hats are a great option for adventurous or outdoorsy women looking for protection and flair. Bucket hats accentuate a camo-safari look with simplicity and comfort.
• Beret hats associated with French culture are flat-crowned, soft, round, and moldable caps that are transportable and easy to wear. Berets soften angular features, elongate round faces worn tilted, and balance oblong faces worn slightly off-center. Hand-knitted, crocheted, or woven berets may also be dressed up by adding a decorative pin. Berets complement just about any outfit, and look especially chic with military jackets since they originated as uniform headgear for soldiers during the seventeenth and eighteenth century.
Keep fashion hats on whenever…
• The national anthem is being sung or played
• A national flag is raised or exhibited in a parade or funeral procession
• Attending a religious service
• Dining at a luncheon, wedding, or garden party
• In a residence
• Sitting at an indoor performance or event
Remove fashion hats whenever…
• Interviewing for a job
• Working within a professional environment
• Dining in business
• They obstruct the view of a person sitting behind you
• Wearing unisex hats such as trendy baseball caps/visors or stylish cowgirl hats during: formal introductions, funeral/processions, flag raisings, mealtimes, religious services, indoor performances, work environments, or while entering public buildings or restaurants.
*Cancer patients and women with Alopecia Areata are exempt from these hat removal etiquette guidelines