Monday, January 14, 2008

Mad Hatters.

I have never understood hats. That is to say, I think they are deliciously novel ideas, but when placed on my hands (better yet: on my head) I do not know what to do with myself. I am not the sort of person that hats tend to compliment (my mother looks marvelous in hats, very much in a Gene Tierney sort of way); they make my face look very long most of the time.

For this reason, I am very fond of berets. I have quite the collection, if I do say so myself. They are lovely, since I don't feel it too obvious that I am wearing a hat with them, and have the wonderful addition of often being wool and keeping my poor ears toasty when it is abhorrently windy. However, ahem, I must complain about one aspect of them: maybe this is just me, but they squash my delicate ears and after a little while of wearing, hurt too much to go on. If I don't pull them down low enough, I find my hair goes awry and then my ears poke through that way and that is something I simply refusr to tolerate.

I suppose I really enjoy the idea of a hat. I have always wanted a top hat desperately, though real-sized or miniscule I still cannot decide, and even had grand plans to wear one to a winter ball or prom in high school (that did not happen, much to my disappointment). I have a very large black felt hat that I bought and have never worn but it looks interesting and whimsical, hanging haphazardly off of a now-defunct lamp.

(I do not really approve of baseball hats and the like. I don't know why, I'm sure they have their uses, I just sort of hate them irrationally for no reason.)

My dad wears very interesting hats. I should document them pictorially as they really are a sight to see. He has berets also, my dad is very cool, and also a very odd safari hat that I don't think he has ever worn in real life but it too looks waderlust-y on his bookshelf. He also has hats which I am not sure of the name, but they resemble fedoras without being quite so self-consciously sartorial (I really am busting out the vocab for this post). He also wears those rabbit fur hats with the flaps on the sides, only his aren't lined in lumberjack patterns and he doesn't pull the flaps down. He also has a pair of ridiculous gloves that go up to the elbows to match the hats. They look like giant paws and scare the crap out of the cats. Someday I will do a post all about my father's dressing habits, which are something amazing. If there is any one cultural or pop figure who reminds me most of my dad, most of the time, it is Robert Redford in Out of Africa (Oh the heartbreak! Another movie that fills my soul with divine grief while also appealing to the very bones of my aesthetic soul).

It's just that hats really say something. To me, they are the ultimate in knowing what you are doing (when they're done right. Alternately, they seem to say, even if this looks stupid I have confidence!). They sort of seem like this strange item, which when placed on top of the rest of the outfit, locks it all into place.

I bought this hat at J. Crew (outlet!), since it seems to be one of the few that does not make me feel as though I am trying too hard to wear a hat. I rather enjoy it!


  1. I think you look great in your hat. As for the beret ear problem, what I always do is let my ears poke out of the beret and drape my hair over them. I think they are a lot more comfortable that way.

  2. I feel similar in academic settings--here I am dressed rather madcap (waifish, over-dressed, etc), yet I do want to be taken seriously. I basically don't talk about fashion to any of my friends, or in class, or to anyone really. It's pretty obvious I dress strangely (compared to the other people at my school), but I don't want to be taken as frivolous or less intelligent because of an interest in fashion. But fashion doesn't affect my IQ and sports/hobbies/many things are also frivolous--yet no one mocks a soccer freak (though athletes are also not deemed the most intelligent).

  3. hats make me look insanely stupid..

  4. ack! this is the 1st time I've seen your site (via Whimsical Nerd) I like it already! ;-) What a cool outfit.

  5. hey, I have something for you on my blog. :)