One day when I was ten years old, my mother bought me a hat. It was a black, wool, tag-less, newspaper-boy hat, a beret with a bit of a brim really. It looked not unlike the hats the man wears in the picture book classic “Caps For Sale”.
It was simple, timeless. It wasn’t pink, it didn’t have Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles on it. For some reason, and looking back I can not begin to remember it, ten year-old me fell in love with that hat. I wore it every day to school. I sometimes wore it in class even though that wasn’t allowed; it often went unnoticed due to its subdued nature (and the fact that my elementary school was over 50% Asian- far more heads were black than blonde.) I hid underneath it the horrible week I had to wear orthodontic headgear to school. I even wore it on picture day and some how managed to get in front of the camera with it on, the resulting image a witness to posterity. I loved that hat.
Just as I have no clue where it came from, no idea why I loved it so much, cannot fathom how I was allowed to wear it for a school picture, it boggles my mind that I never lost it. It is resting, as I type, in a hat box (literally) at the foot of my bed. It is accompanied by over a dozen other hats, and though I rarely wear it and certainly favor others, it’s the hat that started it all. I love hats. I’m a hat person. I look good in them. Sometimes I think I look better in them than I do bare-headed, like that guy we all know who never takes off his baseball cap. But I learned my lesson early, after wearing the same hat everyday for my tenth year, mix it up! It’s fun!
I’ve also been lucky enough to be inspired by a dear friend who is a fashion historian, a milliner herself, and the topic of my “Tell us about a person who has inspired you” essay that got me into college. She is without a doubt the most fabulous person I know.
She has a hat blog: Haute History: Hats About Town where you can see so many of her amazing designs that are beautiful, often historically inspired, and so whimsical. I could gush a thousand word but I’ll instead let picture speak for me.
Amazing, aren’t they? Hand made. She models them on the streets and at events in Boston.
Enough about hats? No? Oh! One of you has a new hat to add to your collection!
Congratulations PatriciaD, the winner of my first Columbia Sportswear hat giveaway! I’ll be giving away another hat sometime in the next week so stay tuned (and stay warm)!