Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The floppy hat

It was, while searching for my own floppy sun hat, that it occured to me to write about this iconic summer item. I've always been a sun hat girl. Too much sun in my eyes gives me a headache so, even as a teen when no one was worrying much about SPF, I was going around in my offbeat collection of caps.

Fashion still for Vogue, 1957, from

These days, hats are "physician endorsed" which means if you actually need a doctor's note to convince you to wear one, the time has come. If, on the other hand, you've been looking for an excuse to get all Hollywood starlet and parade about in the biggest brim and most oversized sunglasses you can find, well, your moment has arrived.

Floppy hats are everywhere. You can buy new ones, of course (they take their cues from the wide-brimmed styles of the 1930s, 40s and 50s, like this embroidered straw beauty), or you can seek out one-of-a-kind vintage hats.

My favorite hat — the one I can't find — is mauve and crocheted. I bought it from a shop that specialized in handmade gifts and though it was new, it had all of the charm of a pool hat from back in the day when palazzo pants and espadrilles equalled a sexy summer outfit. Here's hoping that look — like the floppy hat — comes back around.

Image from 1930s Vogue