I’ve always been a minimalist when it comes to accessorizing, which is why finding a hat that feels natural with my personal style has been a steady challenge—until now. I decided to take matters into my own hands, and marched over to Goorin Bros. Hat Shop to see if my chapeau soul mate is really out there (hint: it is).
Scroll through to read about my journey, and if you come across a hat you fancy, shop it!
I’ll cut straight to the chase: fit is everything. Before visiting Goorin, I didn’t know my measurements, which is pretty much the key to picking the perfect hat. To find out your size, wrap a measuring tape around your head just above your ears, and refer to this insanely easy-to-use fit guide. Turns out, the circumference of my head is 23-inches, which means I’m a size large. The average one-size-fits-all hat is around 21-22 inches (size medium), but because some brands make their hats smaller or bigger, be sure to check before you buy!
As you’re probably aware, there are many, many different face shapes. Oval, square, pear, heart, diamond, oblong, rectangle, inverted triangle—the list goes on and on. But guess what? I’ve got a secret for you. Finding the perfect hat is not as complicated as figuring out the shape of your face. The secret: stay true to your proportions! If you have a long face, a tiny hat will look imbalanced. If your face is small, a huge hat will appear disproportionate, and if your face is wide, a narrow hat will look unflattering. Easy, right? I have an oval face that’s fairly medium in length, so I decided to try on hats that were somewhere in the middle.
My personal style is somewhere along the lines of a French tomboy. I’m a sucker for striped shirts, red lipstick, and slouchy trousers. However, when I think of the hats I’m most drawn to, they don’t necessarily match what I wear. For example, I’m head over heels for the wide-brimmed hats of the ‘70s, and can’t get enough of spaghetti western-inspired cowboy hats, but if I topped off my striped shirt and jeans with one of those larger-than-life hats, we’d have a situation on our hands. The takeaway: just because you admire a hat, doesn’t mean it’s the best for your overall look.
Because it’s summer and temperatures are rising, I wanted to find a straw hat first (no one likes a sweaty head). I started out with the cute Boat Party Boater Hat ($140), and while the fit and proportions were there, because of my already French-influenced style, the whole look felt costume-esque.
Next up in my quest for a straw hat: the Ida Mae Cloche ($160). It took all of a few seconds to realize that this rounded, feminine silhouette is just not for me. Next!
Remember those beloved western hats I mentioned earlier? You can probably imagine how elated I was to discover the Playa Megano Straw Fedora ($65), but once I placed it on my head, I knew it would feel too busy alongside my minimalist wardrobe.
Finally! The Panama Hat ($110). Simple design, timeless appeal, and delightfully versatile—I’ll wear it with everything this summer!
Next up on my have-to-have hat list: a felt option that will work with my wardrobe come fall. I’m no stranger to the floppy fedora (style-setters like Kate Moss, Sienna Miller, and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley wear them frequently), so I thought I’d give this one a go. It sat lower on my forehead, which welcomingly shortened the length of my face, but the cranberry color and floppy brim felt too boho to work with my day-to-day look. [Note: this color isn’t available online, but try the Lovely Bird + Free People Buenos Aires Floppy Hat ($68) for a similar look, or call Goorin at 323.463.2006 to ask for the County Line Hat in Cranberry ($130).]
While I knew a short-brimmed hat wouldn’t work with my oval face shape, I tried flipping the brim down in front to extend the length of The Doctor Hat ($140). While this didn’t end up winning my chapeau affections, it’s a solid tip to keep in mind when picking a hat!
Remember the first time you fell in love? Well, take that feeling and multiply it by two, and that’s how excited I was when I found it—the hat of my dreams! This medium-brimmed beauty has traces of western influence without overtly making me look like a cowboy, and the neutral color combination is perfect for mixing in with my minimalist separates. If you’re as excited as I am about this find, pick up your very own County Line ($130).
So what is the secret to choosing the best hat? It’s simple: know your size, face shape, and personal style well enough to be realistic about what hat will compliment those qualities best!
What’s YOUR idea of the perfect hat? Have you found yours yet? Share your chapeaux findings in the comments below!