In fashion, one of the main accessories that adds flair, beauty and style to any look is the hat. Hats are all that, and then some!
A hat is a head covering which is worn for various reasons, including protection against the elements, ceremonial reasons, religious reasons, safety, and, as the most recognized way, as a fabulous fashion accessory. At one time, hats were an indicator of social status. Today, hats are still seen as a sure fire way of adding a touch of class to your garment ensemble.
Hat Fun Fact: While there are not many official records of hats before 3000 BC, they probably existed before that time. Archaeologists think that the Venus of Brassempouy from 26,000 years ago may depict a hat. One of the earliest known confirmed hats was worn by a bronze age man (nicknamed Otzi) whose body (including his hat) was found frozen in a mountain between Austria and Italy, where he’d been since around 3300 BC. He was found wearing a bearskin cap with a chin strap, made of several hides stitched together, essentially resembling a Russian fur hat with flaps.
Make no flap about that, everyone looks smashing and divine when wearing a hat!
Some Popular Types of Hats Include:
- Ascot Cap – A man’s cap distinguished by its hardness and rounded shape.
- Balmoral Bonnet – A traditional Scottish bonnet or cap worn with Scottish Highland dress.
- Baseball Cap – A soft, light cotton cap with a rounded crown and a stiff, frontward projecting bill.
- Beanie – A brimless cap with or without a small visor.
- Beret – A soft round cap, usually of wollen felt, with a bulging flat crown and tight-fitting brimless headband.
- Fedora – A soft felt hat with a medium brim and lengthwise crease in the crown.
- Montera – A crocheted hat worn by bullfighters.
- Pillbox Hat – A small hat with straight, upright sides, a flat crown and no brim.
- Sombrero – A hat with a conical crown and a very wide, saucer-shaped brim, highly embroidered made of plush felt.
- Top Hat – A tall, flat-crowned, cylindrical hat worn by men in the 19th and 20th centuries with morning dress or evening dress.
- Turban – A headdress consisting of a scarf-like single piece of cloth wound around either the head itself or an inner hat.
A glad hatter – sure to flatter!
Hat Fun Fact: Hat sizes are determined by measuring the circumference of a person’s head about 1/2 inch above the ears. Some hats, like hard hats and baseball caps, are adjustable. Other hats come in standard sizes such as small, medium, large and extra large. Traditional hat size is worked out by adding the front and back and side-to-side measurements, then dividing by two. In the United Kingdom, an equivalent hat size is 1/8 inch smaller than in the United States.
And, for all the music lovers and fashion divas around the world, who wears a hat better than Prince?
Hats add dignity, flair and pizzazz to any outfit, and add a unique signature style to the wearer! One of the most famous London hatters is James Lock and Co. of St. Jame’s Street. The shop claims to be the oldest operating hat shop in the world. In the United States, the well-known cowboy hat manufacturer Stetson made the headgear for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Texas Rangers. John Cavanagh was one of the notable American hatters. Italian hat maker Borsalino has covered the head of Hollywood stars and the world’s rich and famous with his glorious hats.
Hat Fun Fact: The tradition of wearing hats to horse racing events began at the Royal Ascot in Britain, which maintains a strict dress code. This tradition was adopted at other horse racing events, such as the Kentucky Derby in the United States.
Race your beautiful self to your nearest hat shop and reward your hard working self with a hip, high fashion, haughty hat!
Extravagant hats were popular in the 1980s, and in the early 21st century, flamboyant hats made a comeback, with a new wave of competitive young milliners designing creations that include turban caps, felt hats and tall headpieces made of human hair. Some new hat collections have been described as “wearable sculpture.” Many pop stars, such as Lady Gaga, have used hats as publicity stunts.
Hat Fun Fact: One of the first pictorial depictions of a hat appears in a tomb painting from Thebes, Egypt, which shows a man wearing a conical straw hat, dated to around 3200 BC. Hats were commonly worn in ancient Egypt. Many upper class Egyptians shaved their heads, then covered their heads in a headdress intended to help them keep cool. Ancient Mesopotamians often wore conical hats, or ones shaped somewhat like an inverted vase.
Whether you wear your hat to hold in heat, keep cool, look cool or to look fine walking down the street, a gorgeous hat on the top of your lovely head is hard to beat!
In the Middle Ages, hats were a marker of social status and used to single out certain groups. Hats for women ranged from simple scarves to elaborate hennin, and denoted social status as well. Structured hats for women similar to those of male courtiers began to be worn in the late 16th century.
Hat Fun Fact: The term “milliner” comes from the Italian city of Milan, where the best quality hats were made in the 18th century.
In the first half of the 19th century, women wore bonnets that gradually became larger, decorated with ribbons, flowers, feathers and /or gauze trims. By the end of the century, many other hat styles were introduced, among them hats with wide brims and flat crowns, the flower pot and the toque. By the middle of the 1920s, as women began to cut their hair short, hats that hugged the head like a helmet became popular.
So many hats, so many events, what’s a girl to do? Wear a different hat everyday, and to thine own self be true!
“I think I’ll be a haute couture hat maker when I grow up.”
“I thought you’d work at a pet store since you love cats and pups.”
“But I love clothes stores too, and simply adore wonderful hats on heads.”
“With your sense of fashion taste and brains you can do anything, you’re so well read.”
“Why you’re right. I can do both and work with animals and fashion.”
“Design hats for critters and start a powerful pet passion!”
Who said hats are only for people? Start your own trend, my fantastic fashion friends!
Nancy Mangano is an American fashion journalist and author of the Natalie North murder mystery book series, A Passion for Prying and Murder Can Be Messy. Visit Nancy on her author website http://www.nancymangano.com, Twitter @https://twitter.com/nancymangano, her fashion magazine Strutting in Style! at http://www.struttinginstyle.com, and her Facebook fan page Nancy Mangano https://www.facebook.com/pages/Nancy-Mangano/362187023895846