Beret Hat or the Boater

The boater is a kind of summer hat worn by men and women in the late 19th century and the early 20th century. To a certain extent, such hats are more formal than  beret-hat-uk. In general, the boater is woven with stiff sennit straw, featuring flat crown and brim. Sometimes, typical solid or stripped ribbon is used to adorn boaters. Due to popularity in boating and sailing in summer, hence such hats are named as boaters.


In the pre-war years, many agents of FBI often wear boaters as an unofficial uniform. Women also wear boaters with hatpins, so that hat could be kept in place. At present, boaters almost could not be found at sailing or rowing events, theatrical and musical performances, or an accessory of old-fashioned uniforms. From 1952, straw boaters were taken as a part of the uniform, matching the Princeton University Band. Besides, boaters are usual garb of traditional barbershop quartets. In recent years, soft and thin straw hats with the approximate shape of boaters have got popular among women.

Similar to formality of Homburg, so they are worn with blazers or with lounge suit. When it comes to boaters, people may remind Jacob Astor IV.  Celebrities like Harold Lloyd and Maurice Chevalier, and engineer Stefano Zacchè from Italy were renowned for their boater hats.

Around the same time, a similar hat in Voctorian era is renowned as sailor, becoming popular among women and children. Counterpart of male boaters — The Sailors feature larger tirm than previous hats. In general, a dark hatband extended to the back to hats. Besides, Women’s sailor hats are often adorned with some flowers around the base of crown, too.

Differences Between Boaters and Sailors

Both of them feature totally flat crown and brim. Boater hats are woven with stiff straw and trimmed with a hatband in tradition. In addition, modest trims are also one obvious characteristic of boaters. In history, sailor hats own wider brims than boaters, and varied in materials. But in recent days, main milliners called such hats as “Boaters” uniformly rather than tell differences between them. Main characteristics of boaters are as follows: round crown and brim.

The Bowler

The bowler, also renowned as a bob hat, derby, billycock or bom

bowler hat
bowler hat

bin, were created for the Edward and William Coke. For the sake of not applicable top hats in work, the Coke brothers would like replace top hats with more practical hats. The durable and strong new hat became popular in working class. Subsequently, they also created a sensation in the middle and upper classes for many years. Although such hat shape is used to headpieces of ladies, bowlers are still worn by royal male members. In May of each year, male British royal male members wear bowlers hats for the Cavalry Old Comrades Association Annual Parade in Hyde Park.

But nowadays, classic bowlers are not popular for royals in recent years. You may perceive that many royal hats have been adjusted slightly in design, especially brims, to meet demands of different occasions.