The question has been asked for centuries, “Are hats a necessity, or are they a silly accessory.” Many women feel that a hat is an important part of their wardrobe and they have tons of different hats, Visors, and even golf caps that they choose from when they are leaving their home on any given day. Below you will find a brief history of women’s hats for your perusal, who knows you may just answer the age old question yourself.
In the Middle Ages, wearing a hat was decreed to be a necessity by the church because it thought that a woman’s hair should be covered. Women who ran around without their hair covered were considered to be loose and immoral, on top of going against the teachings of their church.
In the 18th century, milliners came into play. They were mostly women who made their living by sewing bonnets for women. However, they went a step further and made the bonnet, and hats, fashionable to wear by adding lace and other adornments to their creations. Hats had suddenly become fashionable, and anyone who was anyone owned a nice one or three. Up until the 1780s the hats became more and more elaborate, until a simpler time took over.
After the French Revolution styles took a turn towards the simpler fabrics. Cotton became popular and designs were downgraded to be simple and pretty. After the French Revolution hats fell out of style for a while as they were considered to be for the snooty rich, and everyone wanted to be democratic after the war. By the 1830s, bonnets had grown to huge sizes, and were often used to keep the sun out of women’s faces, and to protect their delicate skin from the elements.
Hats became more elaborate and followed all kinds of different trends in the 20th century. From hats with pins in them to keep them on your head to the 1960s dropping of hats as an accessory altogether, history was made with hats everywhere. Today, women wear sun visors to the beach, and baseball caps to the park, but the bonnet seems to be gone forever in today’s modern world.