On the Runway
The knit beanie isn't a new accessory by any means, but there were a handful of designers, such as Lacoste's Felipe Oliveira Baptista, that really celebrated this accessory for fall. In keeping with his ski resort-inspired collection, Baptista topped off woolly pullovers and dresses (see the brand's Colorblock Turtleneck Dress ($400, 800.4.LACOSTE) for a similar style) with ribbed beanies, like the Metal Croc Alpaca Knit Cap ($50) shown above. The result: an outfit that can take you seamlessly from the mountain slopes to the city streets.
On the Streets
WHAT: Arriving at JFK Airport last month.
WEAR: Printed beanie with pom-pom.
WHY: A loose-fit beanie with a subtle print conceals plane hair while adding polish to an on-the-go look.
WHO: Dree Hemingway
WHAT: Front row at the Balmain S/S 13 show during Paris Fashion Week.
WEAR: Balmain beaded jacket; orange beanie.
WHY: Who says you can't incorporate this accessory into your eveningwear? In Hemingway's case, the casual, bright orange beanie lends a beaded evening jacket some understated cool.
WHO: Cara Delevingne
WHAT: Outside the Westin Hotel in Paris late last month.
WEAR: Cropped bomber jacket; black t-shirt; cuffed denim shorts; red beanie.
WHY: If anyone knows how to sport a beanie right now, it's model Cara Delevingne. The stylish Brit hammed it up for the camera in this red version more than a few times during various Fashion Weeks, but we were particularly fond of the way she styled it here with a cobalt bomber jacket, casual black tee, and denim shorts--the outcome is so Steve Zissou-at-Vogue, don't you think?
WHO: Ginta Lapina
WHAT: Between shows during New York Fashion Week earlier this year.
WEAR: Helmut Lang furry-trimmed leather jacket; Balmain jeans; vintage beanie; Yves Saint Laurent bag.
WHY: A leather jacket and lived-in jeans give an understated beanie a model-off-duty spin.
Feeling a case of need-it-now? It's a good thing, because we've gathered an assortment of our favorite options for you to try. First, there are loads of traditional knit styles to choose from; some standouts include Hat Attack's Cuff Hat ($50), Topshop's Plain Rib Beanie ($20), and Plush's Barca Slouchy Hat ($50), which is available in a slew of bright colors including pink, blue, and yellow.
However, if you have your heart set on a pom-pom iteration, we've got plenty of those too. You can go for a luxe version, like Lanvin's Rabbit Pompom Hat ($745), or experiment with something a little more playful and bright, like Mulberry's Tiger-Intarsia Angora-Blend Beanie ($230) or 1717 Olive's Graphic Fair Isle Hat ($32).
Speaking of playful, Eugenia Kim's Felix Knit Beanie Hat with Cat Ears ($192) is quite adorable and will add a dose of personality to your bundled-up looks, while the mohawk detailing on Skaist Taylor's Fringed Mohair-Blend Hat ($190) is perfectly suited for those with punk-rock sensibilities.
And finally, we'd be remiss if we didn't mention the Elder Statesman's Cable Watcher ($396, 310.274.8800), which might just be the softest thing we've ever felt. Of course, it doesn't matter what style you ultimately choose, just know that you're not only doing your wardrobe a favor, but your head and ears will appreciate it too!--Jessica Baker