Wednesday, November 20, 2013

In which the hat makes the girl

"Every girl looks cute in a hat," said my grandpa one day, holding my face and smiling.  I was somewhere around eight, and had just spent the past fifteen or so minutes trying on every hat in the hat drawer at my grandparents' house.  The hat drawer rested within an old white dresser, that rested within a very full closet near the back entrance of their house.  Adjacent to this closet was a powder room.  I'd dart back and forth between the two spaces, trying on each hat and peering at the new woman in the mirror.  He'd been watching this process, and eventually had to chime in.

With each changing hat, I was suddenly glamorous, or cute, or spunky (or super 70s -- did I mention the depth and range of this drawer?).  It's one of the first times that I recall really having a connection to the things I wore.  Or, moreover, discovering that the things I wore could make me feel a certain way.  I mean, I knew which jeans fit and which didn't, and which tights itched like hell, but this was a discovery of costuming.

A hat can make a character.  Sure, the clothes matter, but it's the hat that makes the statement.  Toy Story's Woody would be just a guy in a flannel, and Eric Cartman a regular fourth grader.  Without their hats, their characters are incomplete.

It was when I saw Love Story last week, though, that the power of the hat truly came through.  I hadn't even heard of the movie before.  It was my day off, and early snow was floating its way over everything.  I was in the mood for romance.  Equipped with a hot tea and a sentimental disposition, I began watching.  In the first 60 seconds, I was all at once completely annoyed by the acting, and completely transfixed with the characters that I quickly fell for.  Ali MacGraw's "Jenny" was a cool girl.  I find it rarer in my adulthood to look up to a movie character, but this one had me.  And she had the best damn hats.

I ended up bawling my eyes out by the end (shouldn't they warn you of these things?!?).  I was left feeling lofty and lovey, and in serious need of a beanie.  My grandpa was right, girls and hats do mix excitingly well, but what he will never understand is the powerful feeling we get when we find the right one.

Here are some of my favorites from Free People (click each image to bring up the webpage):

free people beanie on EmilyAnneStyle


  1. Lovely hats, thanks for posting! It's about time here in LA to start wearing hats :-)

    Big kiss!

  2. I love hats and am sad that they are not as trendy as they used to be. Beanies are nice compromise, though I personally prefer structured hats, like from the 20s or 50s, but that probably depends on the movies you watch.


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