Being a big girl can be tough when it comes to pulling off male tailoring. We’re generally too big to do that whole “isn’t she adorable in her boyfriend’s jacket” thing and our curves keep us ANYTHING from androgynous. Tilda Swinton we aint.
And you know? That’s totally okay, because we don’t need to be. Sure, she has a whole mess of statuettes and Alber Elbaz on speed dial, but we have breasts and when it comes down to it, my sweet baby Alber isn’t getting me out of a speeding ticket when I get pulled over for the third time in two weeks.
My other issue with masculine tailoring on women is that unless it’s VERY modern and VERY high-quality –which translates into prohibitively expensive for a lot of us– well, it can look a little played out.
So what’s a girl to do?
Think outside the boxy jacket.
Over the next three days, we’ll be borrowing pieces from the boys, starting with the item nearest and dearest to my head:
Call it a bowler or a derby, if you’ve got dramatic features or a heart-shaped face you need one of these. I bought one last week and I have no idea how I lived without it. It was like the week I discovered gin and rechargeable batteries. God, that was a good week.
So how do you wear it? Cocked and low on the brow, never EVER on the back of your head. Debbie Gibson is Not What We’re Going For. Think Fraulein Sally Bowles.
Sigh. Life is just so much more FUN when everything’s a Fosse number.
Anyway, there are plenty of purveyors of fine-quality bowlers (you want to be careful you don’t get a costume one. You’re looking at spending $30 – $60 on a decent wool one. Fur felt will be about $400) I like to support local business, so I picked up a traditional wool felt bowler from Stacey Adams at a fantastic little haberdashery called Hatbox. I recommend it to you highly if you’re in the Austin area, although beware: it is a haberdashery, not a millinery. You’ll probably have to get your church hats somewhere else.
Speaking of recommendations, let me suggest unto you a fantastic book:
You might have seen the musical of the same name, but I still suggest you pick up a copy. The portraits are amazing, the stories are touching and –setting aside my own personal interest in the place where fashion and faith collide– these women are WEARING some hats.