New Spaces

Not only are we extremely close to opening our new space in
the Exchange District... we have moved our blog.

All the content from this blog has been moved to our new
address on the web. We will leave this blog up as a byway
to ...

See you there!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

When Everybody Wore a Hat

The illustration above is the cover of a children's book which my moppet and I have enjoyed reading many a time. The author regales us with a nostalgic trip in this memoir about his childhood. William Steig was 96 when this book was published. He passed away about six months after publication. Though he published many books in his lifetime he may be best known as the author of Shrek! Yes, *that* Shrek, which came as a total surprise to me when I discovered this not ten minutes ago. But I digress... The first time I read "When Everybody Wore a Hat" I found myself grinning the entire way through. I have read and reread it countless times now, and I still find myself smiling from cover to cover. If you haven't read it, even if your kids are all grow'd up and have kids of their own now, I'd recommend picking up a copy the next time you're passing through a book store. It begins; "This is the story of when I was a boy, almost 100 years ago, when fire engines were pulled by horses, boys did not play with girls, kids went to libraries ..." And, of course, everybody wore a hat.

Whatever happened to hats? Why doesn't anybody wear them these days?

I love vintage hats. Hats with feathers. Hats with veils. Bonnet hats. Halo hats. Pillbox, cloche, wide brimmed, banded and bedecked with flowers. I must have inherited my admiration for hats from my Baba, a very ChiChi woman with closets full of hats and shoes with matching handbags and drawers full of gloves (I won't even mention the rhinestone baubles). I've just never been able to wear them. They look stupid on me. Or I look stupid on them. Whichever it is, I've always thought of myself as not being a 'hat girl'.

Earlier this month I read an article in the Los Angeles Times lamenting that the hat hasn't made a sensational comeback since Jackie O banished hers to the back of the closet (check out the link below!). Heads haven't made much of an ado by way of a fashion statement since then. The author of the article, Patt Morrison, makes mention of the hat department at Nordstrom and I couldn't help but wonder, if no one, except Miss P and Patt in the hat, is wearing them, then why would a huge department store chain like Nordstrom have an actual hat department?

On a recent trip to Pheonix I vowed to keep my eyes open for hats and found I didn't need to be particularly observant - I couldn't walk into a department store or a boutique without practically tripping over hats. Pretty hats. Funky hats. Vintage inspired hats. I tried a few on. I purchased none. I vowed to try to find that article again - only this time I was going to actually watch the accompanying video in which the author demonstrates the do's and do not's of hat wearing. The sagest piece of advice she had? You wear the hat. Never, ever, let the hat wear you. Easy enough for her to say. She has a hat head. Miss P has a hat head. I simply do not. Then again, after some reflection, maybe I have been relinquishing too much control to the hat. I'd better go watch that video again. We have some pretty delicious hats coming out of the closet for spring.

Take me there!

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