Friday, 12 October 2012

From Summer to Winter: The Fedora Hat

Olivia Palermo models a deep-red velvet fedora for Velvet magazine,
the September 2012 issue. Photographed by Luc Coiffiat

    Introducing the only accessory you need for fall; the fedora. You may have worn yours religiously throughout the summer- a straw one makes a gorgeously stylish sun-shader for festivals or that beach getaway- but instead of putting your fedora away for winter hibernation, make it your number one go-to for these autumnal days. The beanie takes second place in your accessory cupboard, losing out to this effortlessly chic hat. If you don't already own a fedora then you must invest in one! For those who feel they don't suit hats, this is how I felt too until I tried one on. But the whole 'hats are scary' or 'I have to have a bold dress-sense to wear a hat' outlook is a myth; the fedora is about pared down, understated-cool. It is an easy-to-store piece that can easily slip into your wardobe and complete any outfit.
   For anyone who isn't 100% sure on what classifies the fedora, it is traditionally a hat that is creased lengthwise down the crown and pinched in the front on both sides. However, some fedoras vary in shape, with some appearing more like a bowler hat but with a wide brim. Material-wise it can vary from felt or straw to velvet or canvas fabric. Historically the fedora began as a western, upper-class women's accessory, before branching out to become the headwear choice for men in the 19th century. Today a fedora is used to add fashionable flair to both men and women's wardrobes. The appeal of the fedora is that it is so versatile, regarding gender, weather or the outfit it is put with. Ultimately I love the part-bohemian, city-chic look it seems to compliment the most- look to the likes of Elizabeth Olsen, Miranda Kerr and Isabel Lucas for inspiration. Although the fedora deems an outfit effortlessly en-vogue, it also asserts a serious attitude that makes a statement fashion impact. This desirable style attitude is exactly what Hedi Slimaine opted to exude on the Saint Laurent catwalk at last month's Paris Fashion Week. The designer, who recently took over from Stefano Pilati ,used oversized black fedoras to compliment his prairie-meets-rockstar design aesthetic and the overall effect was amazing. 
 
Picture courtesy of jaystrut.com
  Meanwhile, Stefanel's Autumn/Winter '12 ad campaign starring the fabulous Karlie Kloss shows how much of a statement the fedora can make. Kloss is photographed on the London set by Mario Testino wearing a series of stunning fedora hats. Teamed with chunky bird-themed knits, tailored shorts, thick cardies and scarves, this shoot emphaises the fedora as the perfect transitional summer to fall accessory.

Photographs by Thefrontrowview.com 
  Lizzie Olsen has her hipster city-chic look perfected, seen here wandering the streets of New York in cords, a cosy fur jacket by Maison Martin Margiela and Chelsea boots accessorized with a roomy tote and of course, a fedora. While we're talking about key transitional pieces, a great pair of sunnies are, needless to say also an essential for going from summer to fall.
  
Photo courtesy of frontrowview.com
 
Photo courtesy of 3abaya.com
  Obviously the coolest way to travel is in style, and Lizzie's established that with her super-chic ensemble of skinny jeans, a simple grey sweater under a blue-checked overcoat, a houndstooth carry-tote and preppy-cute blue suede Pour La Victoire oxford shoes. She carries her trusty, ribbon-detailed fedora for extra style points (and when her hair gets messed up in-flight!).
 
 

Photo courtesy of Denimology.com
 Another trendy traveller- style queen Elle Macpherson was spotted at a London airport wearing MET's Elah Eco Pelle jeans with a shaggy fur jacket, a beige patterned scarf, black patent pumps and the ultimate combo of aviators and a fedora. Glamorous, on-trend yet comfortable.
 

Photo courtesy of Fashion.telegraph.co.uk
   Isabel Lucas always looks the definition of model-off-duty chic without fail and this outfit is no exception. It's so simple but so cute, and that's the allure of it. I love her navy trench coat with the grey woollen tights and brown lace-up boots- three perfect autumnal colours. The polka-dotted pink socks are adorable too and an easy but quirky way to add interest to your outfit. Her plain tan fedora finishes off her laidback look, sitting beautifully over her loose blonde locks.
 

Photo courtesy of Zimbio.com
  Anyone who stalks Miranda Kerr like I do, will know that she is an avid fan of fedoras. A classic brown felt one triumphs again- it definitely seems to be the most popular amongst the A-list- as Miranda adds her Rag and Bone hat to an Isabel Marant studded denim jacket, a cream shirt, Stella McCartney black pants with sheer panels and her favourite Marant Dicker boots.
 In my opinion, the fedora represents the exact style I love and try to replica- it is as I said earlier, very hip, very boho, very classic...it can be smart when dressed up, or it can stylishly hide the ever-dreaded bedhair! All in all the fedora is a luxe update on the winter hat and can make anyone look like a confident Parisian at heart. So, if you haven't discovered from these desirable fedora-based looks that wearing a fedora will make you look cool- it is a sartorial truth- then let me tempt you with some hot high-street versions...
 


Pull&Bear Hat with Medium Sized Brim £17.99


Pret a Portabello Black Fedora Hat £30


Topshop Studded Camel Fedora £38
 


Banana Republic Felt Panama Hat £45
Friis and Company Dravel Hat £22.50

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