I usually find myself agreeing with Paul Constant on a lot of topics, but this post left a sour taste in my mouth. Maybe I'm reading it wrong, but this comes across as weirdly snobbish and cruel. Why the hypercriticism of others' clothes? And the politicization of them? Try to imagine doing to with respect to a class of people you actually like and it becomes a little clearer how needlessly mean-spirited this is.

Or maybe I'm just having a rough day!
what an awful stereotype, i'm so sorry you have to think all of these thoughts every time you see someone in a hat
Meh, most of what I see hipsters & the like wearing would be more accurately described as trilbys, not fedoras, which I think says something significant about the sartorially ignorant ones criticizing them.
Please tell me, of the remaining hat options, which is acceptable? Top hat? Ball cap? Meshback? Newsboy? Beret? Cowboy? Fez? Beer can helmet?
I'm going to do something risky and agree with Paul. When I meet a guy wearing a fedora, my first though it pretty much always "libertarian, gamer, or both?" and I'm almost never disappointed.
Wear a deerstalker and Billy Childish will likely kick your ass.

You forgot this.
@4: as long as the cans in the beer helmet have a narrative printed on them about why putting beer in cans is better, Seattle will allow it.
Look like everyone else and your appearance choices won't be politicized. Certainly don't wear any hats, hats imply something other than personal style and keeping your head warm. I'd suggest we all start wearing Logan's Run style track suits but we can't do that because track suits are for cultists. This is the first I've heard about a fedora stereotype. What if it's a cowhide one, can I please be stuck with the Indiana Jones stereotype or does it really have to be a negative stereotype?
I'm pretty sure Bronies wear pink hats.
@5, so very true. If you don't wish to be associated with assholes, find another fashion accessory.
Yeah, the trilby/fedora distaste was totally not on my radar, as a person who does not live on the internet, and I honestly find it bewildering. The men I've known who wore such hats were not brogrammer types. Meh, I have never in my life been cool enough to know what the cool kids considered acceptable sartorial choices.
A bowler hat is the Fedora is the Tuxedo shirt.
"Well-dressed" very often means the clothes were made (or chosen?) to hide a body that has gone terribly out of shape…it's just camouflage, really. If you're young and fit, casual is often attractive. This article reads like an angry, slightly envious of the young, old guy. OMG, Paul Constant has become the Stranger's Joel Connelly!
Oh for fucks sake- I wear a hat because it's better than an umbrella- your ignorance of hat styles doesn't make you a truth seeing special snowflake, you are just another line drawing bumblefuck drunk on your own semen- what about stocking caps when it's snowing you mindless twat? Am I alowed to keep my head warm without aching your Victorian eye?
Fashion advice from a guy who doesn't own a pair of pants that fit?

@5 weirdly, I too associate the fedora with libertarians. I wonder where the association lies?
Um, the hat isn't doing the thinking. It covers the thing that does the thinking, and can be swapped at will

I wear a fedora because my head shape goes best with a wide brim and a short crown. A bowler has a narrow brim, which looks good on some and ridiculous on others. (I also have about 30 other hats including Homburgs, Tricorns, Boaters, and of course a Fez.)

Really, Paul, you have a lot to learn about hats.
Oh but keep all the tattoos you want since everybody has them and don't say anything about you personally, like a hat does.
do you wear a suit to work? no?

then don't wear a fucking brimmed hat.

it's not 1940.

also, no kilts.
@20 We need shorter kilts. The economy is booming. Time for hemlines to go up.
Bowlers, working class??! The impression of that hat emblazoned on my brain will forever be that of the dashing John Steed of the 1960's Avengers tv show.…
What's wrong with flappy winter hats? Seems like those are pretty practical and non-showy. What next, rubber boots? Umbrellas? Can't we just live our lives?
This is the most important article you have ever written. I am completely sincere in this. Congratulations.
Does any of this have anything to do with hipsters?
This has been a long time coming. I went to PyCon last year and holy CRAP were there so many stupid hats. Bowlers definitely among them. God, it was awful.
Usually Fnarf would be all over this topic. That guy is a dandy, if nothing else.
The idea that Paul Constant has anything to offer in the way of sartorial choices is hiliarious. This is a guy that isn't even aware of traditional summer suit colors.

Also... I've seen you in public, Paul. I've seen how you dress. Glass houses and all that.

@28 exactly. Those red leather boots he wears are such an amazing affront to fashion.
I'm sorry to read this. I wear a wool...trilby I guess...that does a great job keeping my head warm and the rain off. It's as if they evolved for our climate. Bummer to think that people are spinning stories in their minds about my politics. But I suppose that happens with any outward feature, clothes or otherwise.
The three people you saw on the street in South Lake Union did nothing but stand on the street and you decided to assault their character for no better reason than sounding cool and in the know or in other words the fashion police. What a deplorable existence you must have when you become so full of yourself that you have to stereotype people for wearing a hat or other clothing. Sounds like some priorities need to be checked.
I'm just grateful they haven't discovered ironically wearing a Ted Nugent droopy-front pointy-top cowboy hat. What are those called? The kind your meth-head body-type cowboy likes to sport with a stalk of grass in his teeth.

Regardless, we shouldn't rule those out for next season. Or maybe boas and dirty t-shirts. Anything is possible.

Paul Constant's principle is sound: you can't fake style by being basically a slob who picks out one loud accessory like the cherry on top of a sloven sundae. Hat, tattoos, anorak, piercing, or H-K automatic in a cheapass holster flopping around your thigh, it just doesn't work. Some are worse than others (hint: the gun is the worst choice), but the problem is that it's so halfassed, and everyone can see that.

Slob + statement accessory = slob. You have to either do the job right or admit you're not into style. Which is OK.
So you like to judge people by their appearance. Noted, and filed away in my don't-give-a-shit file.
Haters gonna hate. My chrome dome requires a little shelter from the weather and I'm not going to wear a ball cap or a wig. Try if you will but I don't fit in your stereotypical boxes.
I can't wear hats because my hair WILL NOT BE CONTAINED. Well, except for a big floppy canvas hat. Jam it on, pull the cord snug under my chin, and it'll keep the mountain sun off my face, which is invaluable for field work.
I was just last night lamenting the fact that wide brimmed hats have become unwearable on account of their tribal implications. I love my battered brown hat, but I can't wear it without feeling like a bit of a tool. That said, if my hair isn't together, I'll throw it on, but not if I'm wearing jeans and a t-shirt.

Paul's rules for going behatted are spot-on, FYI. You'd never pair it with a t-shirt and jeans, much less a fanny pack (ugh), ponytail (yuck), or unruly facial hair (neckbeards, Guy Fawkes beards, etc.). Don't be that guy. Just don't.
"a certain type of man, a person with a rich online life who is prone to mansplaining and is very un-self-aware." -- could the irony get any thicker?
That was kind of a weird post.

1. Sexist jerks and also men who like My Little Pony wear fedoras.

2. I saw some male employees (Sorry, I meant "south lake union Brogrammer types") wearing bowler hats. Also, I saw at least one other bowler hat this year at some point.

3. Therefore, sexist jerks who like My Little Pony wear bowler hats.

Maybe these three "brogrammers" you saw from a distance aren't Gamergaters and don't want to be associated with them and, as part of that, don't wear fedoras?
I just want to be able to wear whatever I want on my head without everyone getting all judgmental about it.
@36- A Guy Fawkes isn't unruly, it's trim by definition. Paul's rules for wearing hats can lick my sweaty balls.

(for the record I wear chunkily hand knit toques, navy watch caps, or boonie hats depending on the weather and what's on top of the hat pile. I like to pair this with cargo capris and t shirts with whimsical scifi themes. Then I hang around outside Tim Gunn's house making him feel uncomfortable.)
A fedora/bowler conveys the message "please pay attention to me even though I have nothing interesting to say, also ignore my bald spot, and I wish I was taller."
I have a friend who could pull off a homburg with ratty clothes but that kind of thing is really sui generis.

For the most part, the problem with blocked hats is that they haven't been in style in 40+ years. You might as well wander around town in a powdered wig.
hatters gonna hat
...or those flappy winter hats that make absolutely no one look attractive.

I'm not sure I agree with you a hundred percent on your police work there, Lou.
As a man of a certain age (and a certain amount of vanity) who has a pretty decent head of hair, I generally eschew hats.

Helmets, though, are another matter. I have a white Bern for biking and a pretty nice pith for sunny days when I don't mind people thinking I'm Teddy from "Arsenic and Old Lace."
So what are those of us who are bald and like to keep warm in the colder months supposed to wear? Especially with something a little dressy casual like a blazer and jeans? A wool cap won't cut it. I'm not being snarky. Like, really, what should I wear since the masses have declared the brimmed hat not in fashion.
The majority of men's brimmed hats I've seen around are trilbys (trilbies?), not fedoras. Maybe saying the hat is a trilby is not "argu[ing] against the fedora stereotyping", but a correction--perhaps a fussy, over-specific correction, but just a factual correction.
@20 why do you hate my Celtic culture so? I don't say things about you wearing English shirts and neck cravats you ironed or suits based on English gentry ...
The world is a slightly more stupid place for having this in it. Thank you, Paul Constant for reminding us all that sometimes a hat is just a hat, and that the people who really care about what a hat says about the person wearing it,Paul Constant included, are mostly people whose opinions are safely ignored.
I really wish the unsavory people would leave my hats alone. I had to switch from a very nice diamond-top pork pie to a derby, because the pork pie looked too fedora-y, and I don't want to give up the derby.

Derbies are great. They were the most popular hat in the 1880s west, revisionist movies with their silly cowboy hats be damned. They are a good, solid, working class hat.

I'm not short, I'm not bald, I just want something to keep the rain off my head. I don't mind that people think I'm ridiculously pretentious with my affectations, I just don't want them thinking I'm a libertarian or a member of the he-man woman hater's club.
Also, you can definitely add a derby or bowler to a slovenly set of clothes and make it look great. Tom Waits does it.

Or it there an exception for people who have a name that is a sentence?
I've worn fedoras since the 70s. Nice wide, snap-brim fedoras, not trilbys being called fedoras. They're perfect for the winter weather here.

Now I'm supposed to give it up because it makes me look like I'm trying to be a hipster or brogrammer? I think the lack of ironic mustache and addition of breasts pretty well rule those out.

I'll be happy when they become unfashionable & I can resume wearing mine.
Sorry, Paul. This post demonstrates you know nothing about fashion, fashion theory, or fashion themes.

Gentleman (as well as brogrammers), keep wearing hats as you see fit.
It's so nice to know that all I have to do to avoid people who are incapable of forming their own opinions without a front page reddit post is to wear a brimmed hat. Done.
Paul this was a very negative and unpleasant post. There are so many awful things to complain about already - please don't keep adding to the list. Live and let live. BTW, I've come to like the porkpie. I don't know if that symbolises any particular subculture and I don't care. Not caring about nonsense like this is one of the advantages of having progressed into my fifth decade.
You can't wear a dressy hat with slovenly clothes.

You can, and you could get paid big bucks for it too, a hundred years ago.
I started wearing fedoras - and other stylish non-baseball hats - before Paul was born, and I'll probably be wearing them long after he's left us.
Sure if you a horrible person switching your hat style won't make you a less horrible person, but Paul not wearing a hat doesn't make you any less of a judging condescending ass hat.
>who is prone to mansplaining

The fedora "m'lady"/super-dork stereotype does not remotely encompass this concept at all. This article makes no sense.

What the hell happened to you? You used to post cool things about comic books and big walks and dorky happenings in the city. Now it's like you're some butthurt out-of-touch guy who doesn't realize he's out of touch because you're out of touch differently than the people you're looking down on (that sentence was atrocious but so is your tone lately. Find wherever your happy or sense of humor went)
We're all completely fucked and we all completely fucking know it. So let's denigrate people for having the gall to wear a hat in our field of vision.
Hats are dumb. Sportsball hats doubly so. Yet some people have to wear hats. Bald people in particular.
I hate dogs, the 12 man, and tattoos but I don't go around judging people for it because I don't care that much, those things don't hurt anyone, and I don't want to be an asshole.
This was worse than Mudede post.
can't we all just agree that people who wear knit hats in the summer are just the worst? except for rastas. they're allowed.
@21 Hear hear! Up with kilts!
This is how I feel about tattoos.
I have worn fedoras since the late 90's. My current fedora I got in a small shop in Copenhagen and it goes well with the scarf and jacket I got in Reykjavik. If I don't wear my fedora I wear a knitted cap with skulls on it.

Oddly enough, because my current girlfriend hates things with skulls on them and has a borderline fetish for Indiana Jones if I'm wearing my fedora I am actually being MORE considerate of the women in my life by wearing the fedora than if I'm wearing my "skull cap".

With that said, I would consider it odd if someone thought I was a brogrammer or anything like that. However, if someone accused me of being an Reykjavik 101 hipster(can you spot the joke?) the accusation wouldn't be without merit.
If you'd like to see a picture of a man whose image screams "the last person on Earth to have a worthwhile opinion on fashion", click the link where it says "posted by Paul Constant" above.
Elvis sunglasses are the new rainbow suspenders.
@5 I'm an atheist libertarian gamer, quite the hat trick.

I highly recommend a flat-brim cap, such as the standard "motoring cap" preferably made from a good quality Irish wool, which are naturally water-repellent, or the more rounded Ascot style. They're much more casual than a fedora or trilby and tend to fare better in our windy, inclement weather than a narrow-brimmed Derby/bowler. Buy one with a good inner lining for extra protection or in leather, if you can find one. But all costs, eschew the wide, multi-paneled "newsboy cap", which IMO should have been retired ages ago, along with early-century knickerbockers and 1960's ultra-wide bell-bottoms.

If you have to go with something brimmed, but want something that still holds up during our damp Seattle falls & winters, the Irish walker is also a good choice for casual wear.
I've got no opinion.
Is the patrol cap still cool?
@74- Speaking of stupid, what were you trying to reply to?
Paul pretty much nailed it, when I think of fedoras, I think of unwashed gamers and disgusting atheist.

Beanies and baseball hats are the only acceptable hats for most situations.


You are a moron.
Sorry max that was directed at will in #48

Can I just say how proud and pleased I am that we on Slog are so passionate about hats? This thread makes me so happy.
And Comte is correct, those little flat driver's cap are ideal for Seattle.
I, too, am angry I read this post.
@79- I didn't click it, didn't realize it was from Time.

Nice to know you think trying to be a better person and make a better world is retarded.
@82 Way to still be a dick after you realized you attacked @74 for no reason at all.

Also, this is up there with Constant's posthumous take down of Bill Keane. Mean spirited and stupid at the same time. And the whole brogrammer stereotyping? Grow the fuck up, man.

@83- Well first I attacked him for no reason, then I attacked him for a good reason. Seriously, what's wrong with wanting to make the world a better place?

@84- The "retarded" thing you quote doesn't contain an apology.
@81 Imagine how angry I am. I not only read the post, I read the comments.
@86 wins.
This column is stupid on so many levels, but where did you get the notion that the bowler hat is a symbol of the working class in the UK and America? It is far more symbolic of a London city gent than someone from the working class.

It's fashion, and fashion can be fun most times if you let it!! Lighten up maybe? Pharrell Williams wears a very large mis-shapen form of the hat you are mocking and isn't he one of the coolest, fashionably, trend-setting kind of guy there is!! I think so, anyway. Peace out xoxo
I am disappointed to read such negativity about someones appearance in a place associated with the Stranger. I enjoy wearing my Fedora , when appropriate. It reminds me of my Father and to me is a sign of class. As in well dressed. Please, never express your feelings to me about me or I will make unkind remarks about your pie hole. At level 10 volume, in public without any regard for who, what or when. I have gotten to a point in my life where I refuse to tolerate any type of judging of people on any level. I struggle with this often. I am a jerk in recovery. Peace! Sincerely, Erik Coming to you from the redneck rectum of Western Washington, Lewis County. Oops. I just fell off the wagon.

Please wait...

Comments are closed.

Commenting on this item is available only to members of the site. You can sign in here or create an account here.

Add a comment

By posting this comment, you are agreeing to our Terms of Use.