Grab your coat, get your hat...
-Pick a few styles you like--and know their names well enough to talk to the milliner, should you be one of those blessed people with a bonafide hat shop nearby. You can browse a few websites to learn more about hats, including Miller Hats and Dad's Hats.
-Take a friend to the store with you when you try them on. Sadly, I look hideous in newsboy caps, but I've always wanted to buy one, even if they are a little "pop star 2004."
Every time I try one on, my husband gives me that look: "Um, you know I love you, but that hat is...just...wrong." On the other hand, he "forced" me to buy a fuzzy, ivory cap for winter--and I've never received so many compliments on my appearance! A fashionable friend can definitely steer you in the right direction and help you determine if the hat of your liking fits your personality, face and head shape, and lifestyle.
Ladies and gentlemen, do not fear the hat.
Hats add panache to your look and are a sure way to stand out in a crowd. They also serve practical purposes: keeping your head warm; protecting your hairstyle in some cases; keeping the sun and rain out of your eyes (I wear a ballcap while running outdoors); and protecting your face from sun and wind damage.
A few rules:
-Never wear a porkpie hat. Just don't. Something about them screams, "I am a nerd; please make fun of me." Same goes for most berets...unless you're under the age of seven.
-Keep it simple. While wearing a hat, the rest of one's outfit should be somewhat understated. Your hat doesn't necessarily need to match your style of clothing; for example, you can wear a cowboy hat without wearing a bolo (dear God, no!), western shirt, jeans and boots. At the same time, wearing a nubby wool cap with a bikini on the beach seems a little disjointed. Use discretion.
-Know the laws of the land. Hats are fine in same places of worship in some parts of the country; headwear is not okay in others.
-No superfluous plumage. If you must wear a feather in your cap, keep it small and to the side...preferably on a fedora. No Robin Hood caps and feathers permitted.
Some hats we give a hearty thumbs-up:
Hope this advice assists you in your search for a chic chapeau!