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The Festival Hat : Designed to make you feel fantastic!

Susie Williams wearing a Vera Black festival hat

A festival hat is not just to make you stand out (or even fit in) at a festival. Whilst it’s true that a festival hat will turn people’s heads, it doesn’t mean they can only be worn where there’s a party vibe. You can wear it when you feel like it: when going to a bar, out for a walk, maybe when you’re buying groceries. Sure, you can keep it for when you want to feel special, but a festival hat can spark up any outfit.

The three main benefits of wearing a festival hat:

  • You feel great
  • You look great
  • People will want to interact with you

Some people feel as if they need permission to wear a Vera Black festival hat, but that’s just nonsense! They say things like “I’m not sure it’s me” or “I’m not really cool enough to carry it off” Eventually they buy a hat that is perfect for them and we know we’re going to hear from them again:

“I love my hat, it’s given me so much confidence!” or “I get so many compliments when I wear it” 

It’s so rewarding hearing your customers thanking you for selling them your hat! We’ve written more about the psychological benefits of wearing festival hats here.

So who actually wears a Vera Black festival hat?

The obvious point we are making here is that anyone can rock a festival hat. The photo at the top of the article is of a customer, Susie Williams, not a celebrity. However, we have lots of celebrity customers.

Eva Green wearing Vera Black

Here’s film director Tim Burton’s muse and James Bond actress Eva Green wearing a bespoke gambler hat, plus bespoke necklaces designed by Vera.

Staying with actresses here’s Doctor Who, The Spanish Princess and Half Bad actress Nadia Parkes in her bespoke gambler.

Nadia Parkes wearing a Vera Black festival hat
Elles Bailey wearing a Vera Black fedora hat

Moving to the rock star look we have the award-winning blues and roots singer Elles Bailey.

Elles was styled by Vera for what has now become an iconic photoshoot. You can read about this in our interview with Elles about self image, touring in covid times and opening for Van Morrison here.

Elles has no end of our hats, but here are two of her bespoke fedoras.

Elles Bailey in a white Vera Black fedora hat

Another familiar face wearing our festival hats is the King of the Slide Guitar Troy Redfern and his trademark Vera Black gambler hats. You can even buy the Redfern Rambler that one of his iconic hats was based on. See our interview Troy where he discussed his own style of live improvisation, his love of art and the making of his new album The Wings of Salvation here.

We have also styled Oritsé Williams, once a member of pop group JLS, now a singer-songwriter, dancer and record producer.

Here he is wearing our El Capitan fedora hat which looks amazing on people who like to wear a lot of black – even to festivals! 

Oritsé Williams wearing a Vera Black festival hat

Here is classic rock star Arielle with her Vera Black gambler and her guitars that she designed with Queen legend Brian May.

The many styles of a festival hat

Photo: Photographer and artist Tegan

The basic job of a hat is to keep the wearer warm, cool, dry or shield them from the sun. The festival hat does all this in style! If you’re going to a music festival like Glastonbury or Coachella, or maybe something outrageous like Burning Man, you might want something a bit special on your head. Aside from making you look awesome, it can also help your friends find you in the crowd!

But not everyone wants to be that flamboyant. You might be heading to a local gig, an open mic night at your local bar, or just a friend’s barbecue. A good festival hat brings the happy, free-spirited vibes wherever you wear it. It is also perfect for those times when you really can’t be bothered to dress up, but it is expected of you. Just put on something easy and slip on your festival hat and you’re good to go.

So what is the best style of festival hat?

The easy answer here is whatever you like and that suits your own style. Just a quick reminder that you don’t need anyone’s permission to wear a kick ass hat! Wear what you like. You can message us here to talk about what style of hat might suit you best – just drop a link to your Instagram or other social media account so we can get a flavour of your style. You can also take it further and order bespoke hats that are specifically created for you.

You can see all of our festival hats here.

Fedora hats

The fedora hat is the classic rock n roll hat. They’re classy and can just as easily be worn to a wedding as a festival. You can keep it fairly simple like our Tomahawk fedora or make an entrance with something like our El Nero Oro fedora.

The Tomahawk fedora hat

The El Nero Oro fedora hat

You can see the full range of our fedora hats here. They are a fantastic festival hat that you can wear to a variety of occasions. We’ve written a number of articles about fedoras to help you decide which style is right for you.

Gambler hats

Gambler hats have a rebellious edge to them. In a movie you would might expect the dashing hero to wear a fedora (like Indianna Jones). The maverick character who can’t be relied upon to play it straight (like Crocodile Dundee) would wear a gambler. This is not a huge surprise as this hat style originated from the hats that gamblers wore on floating casinos in the US.

So if you’re feeling full of mischief (or think it’s about time you got up to some mischief) a gambler makes the perfect festival hat. It’s not a one trick pony either. Gamblers look very sharp with formal clothes. They are just as happy in the middle of a festival field, in a late night speakeasy bar, worn with jeans on the school run, or with a LBD or sharp suit at a business event. 

You can see our full range of gambler hats here. You can make a big statement with our Ruby Tuesday gambler hat or the Tequila Sunrise gambler. Or rock a more muted vibe with the Sierra gambler, or the Copper Head gambler.

If you want more information about gambler hats see our article What is a gambler hat and why should I wear one?

When does a festival hat become a cowboy (or cowgirl) hat?

The UK Americana music scene is massive and growing year on year. We practically sold out of our hats at the 2022 Country to Country (C2C) show in London and Black Deer was also insanely busy. You can read our report on the 2022 C2C show here.

Many of our hats have an Americana vibe – you can check out our full range of cowboy hats here. Our Arizona fedora hat and the Rose Sunset fedora hat are great examples. But our whole range of festival hats are very popular with Americana fans, especially when they are feeling the festival vibe!

Arizona fedora hat

 Rose Sunset fedora hat

Vera Black and Luke wearing cowboy hats at the C2C show

Here’s Vera and Luke celebrating selling pracitcally all their hats at the C2C stall in 2022. They are pictured in front of their iconic 1972 Dodge Boogie van. 

They have since added a vintage caravan called Elvis to their pop up shop experience. Keep an eye out for it at future shows!

Vera with Crissie from The Shires who has been a long time customer of ours. They were filming for the UK TV show This Morning where the presenter Josie Gibson had a country music style make over and had to choose the perfect hat. The video clip from the show is below.

Crissie Rhodes from The Shires and Vera Black wearing their cow girl hats at the C2C festival.

Are top hats the ultimate festival hats?

Festival hat scene from the Vera Black Sleepy Hollow fashion film

Fun, daring and achingly cool; our top hats really turn heads! They become the centrepiece of any outfit and it’s no surprise that they make you feel taller the moment you put them on. Perfect for any festival outfit, they also fit right into the bohemian, gothic or steampunk vibes. If you like your festival hat to be black and gothic you should check out our Sleepy Hollow fashion video. 

Check out our range of top hats here. 

Our standard (if you can call them that!) top hats are below but contact us if you need a bespoke version.

Rhiannon top hat

Inspired by Tim Burton’s Sleepy Hollow film and Stevie Nicks, this gorgeous hat features ostrich and peacock feathers. The hat itself is carefully distressed, wrapped with lace and embellished with conchos and moonstone.

The Sleepy Hollow top hat

A gothic beauty featuring black ostrich and pheasant feathers, ebony wood, paua shell and intricate beading.

Take a look at our article Top hat time – inspired by Sleepy Hollow and Stevie Nicks for more ways to wear these iconic hats.

Can I wear a festival hat to a wedding?

Hell yes! Our rock n roll hats love to party, but they can also behave themselves during the boring bits – sorry the formal bits. Hats always used to be worn at formal events so you will look quite the part in your festival hat. After all, it’s not your fault if your hat makes it look as if you could get up to mischief at any time is it?

Check out our article on bohemian wedding hats here. 

Photo by Roxane Nicolas

bohemian wedding photo

And finally…

If you’re thinking of buying a festival hat as a present we have some cunning, outrageous and almost sensible suggestions for finding out their hat size without them realising what you are up to.

How do I buy someone a Vera Black hat as a gift?

If you’re still not sure which hat is perfect for you just browse through all the hats we have in our hat section

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