On the Topic of Hats


The novelist Alison Lurie wrote:

“Whatever is worn on the head
is a sign of the mind
beneath it.”


Stephen Jones, British milliner, disagrees.

“Whatever is worn on the head
is a sign of what a person
would like to be.

Hats are a passport
to another world.”


A Givenchy Hat, Paris, 1958
Frank Horvat


Gelatin silver print, 32 x 48 inches, 81.3 x 121.9 cm. Edition 1/AP. Signed, titled, and dated in ink on label on verso. This is a fine, rare and very large print of one of Horvat’s most famous images. Auction Details




~ by eaesthete on 02/15/10.

10 Responses to “On the Topic of Hats”

  1. I remember reading once that Isabella Blow said that she wore extravagant hats for a practical reason: “…to keep everyone away from me. They say, Oh, can I kiss you? I say, No, thank you very much. That’s why I’ve worn the hat.”

    So, I’d say the hat has more to do with the mind, than with the person you want to be. But Isabella was a rare bird and who knows what compelled her.

  2. What a wonderful photogrpah if only I had $18,000 to spare…I love love love hats…and I’m always intrigued by people who wear them. Not too frequent, sadly, these days…

  3. I, being the LIbra, think is both. My husband’s grandmother was a poet and quite the drama queen with her hats. She had a tradition of buying a new hat for her birthday and having her picture taken in it. Too bad the family never saw it as a serious collection and many of these hat portraits have gone missing. She died decades before I joined the family. I think she must have smiled that I chose a wedding hat with veil.

  4. I used to sport an Indiana Jones style hat, back in the days when Banana Republic was nothing more than a surplus store. Love hats.

  5. And if the golf and baseball caps can be considered part of the hat family (and why wouldn’t they be?), then it’s my guess that the male population is beginning to catch up with the females when it comes to wearing one. With some of the younger guys calling the thing on their head a “lid,” and not a hat.

  6. Think I’m inclined to agree with Stephen Jones, I’ve been wearing a hand-knitted Norwegian hat with ear flaps all winter, which is not very glamorous but I quite like pretending that I’m Scandinavian.

  7. This image immediately brought to mind the hijab with it’s intrinsic feminine mystic.

    Had Horvat draped this same silhouette in black…

  8. What a photo! Makes one long for Ascot. If it is actually a bit like this at all.

  9. What an amazing creation. I know it’s orchestrated and I don’t care.

  10. […] [via The Errant Aesthete] […]

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