It started in New York with Marc Jacobs, who accessorized each of his 54 fall exits with an exaggerated fur hat, and ended in Paris with the designer’s parade of extra-large toppers at Louis Vuitton. In between, hats made a significant statement on many runways, from Donna Karan, who drove home her men’s wear theme with small fedoras, to Giorgio Armani, whose models turned their heads mid-runway to draw attention to their trilbies.
Fashion is clearly having a hat moment, but can the trend make the leap from runway to reality? For Jacobs, it’s a no-brainer. “As we’ve done hats many seasons before with Stephen Jones, we’ve seen that the more exaggerated and statement hats we do, the more women want to own them and wear them,” he says. “As with all our accessories, it’s the statement pieces that our customers want.”
His fall hat lineup will be sold at all Marc Jacobs collection stores, including other retailers such as Saks Fifth Avenue, which picked up a selection for its fur departments. Saks’ senior fashion director Colleen Sherin believes that fashion’s newfound love for the category will help drive the business. “They will be editorialized in fall fashion magazines, which will bring more awareness to the category as a whole,” she says. “And it may make people think twice about hats being not just knit caps but also these amazing fur options.”
Or red-fringed bowlers, for that matter. Jason Wu tapped Paris-based Maison Michel to make said hats for his fall collection, which was inspired by the Chinese Qing dynasty. “I think there is a particularly dressed-up moment happening in fashion right now, and hats seem like the perfect accessory for the look,” Wu says. “It is about being put together from head to toe.”
Milliner Eugenia Kim, meanwhile, looked to the Art Deco movement and film noir for her latest lineup, which includes wide-brimmed fedoras and cloches as well as a mini fedora. “There is a huge shift happening from the casual luxe styles that have been so prevalent recently to a more intentional, feminine way of dressing, and hats really help encourage the total look,” says Kim.
Long ago a mandatory accessory for women, hats as a category has been on the decline at least since the Second Vatican Council (1962 to 1965), when hats became no longer mandatory in Catholic churches. With society’s continued casualization, they have since been largely sequestered to special occasions, but if there was ever a moment that seemed right for the old staple, it could be now.
Brooke Jaffe, Bloomingdale’s fashion director of shoes, handbags and fashion accessories, says last year’s royal nuptials and its full display of hats, “was the beginning of a cultural movement, with the eyes adjusting to it looking right again.” She points to “Downton Abbey” and this summer’s Queen’s Jubilee as other “outlets of fantasy dressing” that might make hats work. That said, Bloomingdale’s did not increase its fall buy compared to last year, but Jaffe notes that this season features a greater fashion-driven assortment of hats from designers such as Eric Javits, Helen Kaminski, Genie by Eugenia Kim, Kate Spade and Helene Berman.
Neiman Marcus senior vice president and fashion director Ken Downing also is noting a renewed interest in hats due in part to fashion’s current “dressed-up and polished way of dressing,” but, like Jaffe, he isn’t fully buying into the trend just yet. “Are we ordering more hats at Neiman Marcus? Not necessarily. It’s very specific to a woman who enjoys wearing a hat.”
On that note, Downing added one important point: “The hairdresser is the modern-day milliner for women. Putting a hat on is not something we see many women changing to.”
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)
Breaking News: @hedislimane joins @celine as its new artistic, creative and image director. One of fashion’s preeminent image-makers and trendsetters, Slimane is to join the LVMH brand on Feb. 1 and unveil his first fashion proposition for men and women next September during Paris Fashion Week. It marks a major homecoming for Slimane, who cemented his reputation – and influenced men’s tailoring for more than a decade – as the designer of Dior Homme between 2000 and 2007. He went on to reinvent and ignite the house of Yves Saint Laurent, which he rechristened Saint Laurent, between 2012 and 2016 – all the while maintaining a close relationship with the Arnault family, which controls LVMH and Dior. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
“Personally I believe the Eighties have been the richest and more vivacious period for international fashion,” Giorgio Armani said when asked what his favorite decade of fashion is. It was a moment of disruption and experimentation and only thinking back to the first years of that decade is always an emotion for me, for what they have meant to me and my work.” The influence is clear in @giorgioarmani spring 2018 collection, pictured here, which was full of bright colors and unexpected prints. Read more about which decades designers loved most on WWD.com #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
For Lady Gaga’s only Italian show on her “Joanne World Tour,” the singer wore a range of @versace_official outfits. The standout piece: this custom-made bodysuit inspired by the brand’s spring 2018 collection. #wwdfashion (RG: @ladygaga)
@_camillaruth_ is expanding on the wellness-craze concept with @westbourne – a new NYC restaurant that’s both a healthy-minded café as well as a business that gives back to the community. Marcus works with the Robin Hood foundation to give back to The Door, a non-profit providing youth development services, and also hires employees through The Door. Read our full interview with Marcus on giving back through food on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)