Hats often intimidate girls because it’s very easy to look like an asshole in a hat: one false selection, and you’re that girl at the party who tried way too hard and wore a tacky ass hat. I’m not here to tell you that anyone can wear any hat and, with a little confidence, look amazing. That is patently untrue. I’m here to tell you that with a little information and a lot of restraint, you can select a fashionable and affordable hat that even your haters will covet. Whatever style you select, remember the one golden rule of modern hat wear: don’t get crazy. An accessory that sits atop your face is not an opportunity for unbridled creativity.
The Panama hat has been a staple of summering elites for over a century now, but in Spring 2014 the style is gaining favor among the young and fabulous. Panama hats are brilliant in their simplicity: woven straw, medium brim, and understated ribbon streak. Since the Panama hat exudes Gatsby era vintage charm, it’s best paired with classic or minimalist pieces for understated elegance. Beware of pairing the Panama hat with loud patterns or anything 80’s/90’s neon.
There’s nothing more American than a baseball cap, and designers put their spin on the sporty staple all over Spring/Summer 2014 Runways. Tibi showed Italian-made wooden baseball caps, Lacoste color-matched hats with outerwear, Rodarte channeled street style with backwards baseball caps, and DKNY accessorized the accessory with printed bandanas. Under no circumstances wear a baseball cap emblazoned with an actual baseball team. Backwards baseball caps pair well with a 90’s look. If you’re going for a hip hop/urban look, wear the peak folded or curved.
Unfortunate name aside, Porkpie hats are the new hipster fedora. Just last week I was rifling through Barneys in a last minute Coachella shopping frenzy and spotted some ubercool porkpies with a subtle black sheen. Porkpie hats are not for the faint of heart or prepster girly girl. A porkpie says: I’m here and I’m cooler than you. Since the very shape makes a strong statement, choose a dark, unpatterned, unembellished porkpie. Think glunge: glam meets grunge. Combine a porkpie, leather jacket, and combat boots for a badasss moment.
Oversized floppy hats remain a fashionista must, especially in California. There’s something sexy and 70’s about a wide-brimmed hat carelessly folding over a youthful face. Of course, wearing a wide object that bends over your eyes provides some strategic difficulties. Situations with shoulder-to-shoulder crowds should not be attended in the floppy hat, as there is no room. Driving in a floppy hat sounds like a very poor idea indeed. If you wear a floppy hat to the office, you will look weird. My point is that while floppy hats look fabulous, they should really only be worn outdoors. Floppy hats are best in a neutral shade (beige, brown, black) and look gorgeous with a maxi dress.
Much ado has been mad about the humble fedora, yet the omnipresent style is still popular among fashionable women around the world. Men, on the other hand, should probably stop wearing fedoras; the ‘douchebag dude in fedora’ meme is too powerful. While I still personally believe that classic straw is the best fedora material, fabric is more than acceptable. Patterned fedoras are a style don’t, and for the love of God do not stick a feather in it. You aren’t Robin Hood.