Looking to turn heads this season? Then get hat-happy like designers did this fall. Dismissed not too long ago as being old fashioned, proper toppers have made a huge resurgence as of late with scene stealers like Lady Gaga and Anna Dello Russo donning stylish lids, not to mention the marvels of millinery on full regalia at the royal wedding. But it was on the fall runways where designers displayed their desire to decorate your head with a flurry of fedoras, fascinators and cat-eared caps (hello, Givenchy!). Pick one of these must-have accessories for fall:

1. The fedora

Lanvin-RF11-0107.jpgLanvin fall/winter 2012

From the runways to the front row, fedoras are one of this season’s hottest accoutrements and the ultimate way to master fall’s mannish dressing. Channel chic bohemian style with a wide brim trilby like those seen at Tommy Hilfiger and Dior (not to mention on every street style star) or opt for a floppier felt version a la Nina Ricci and Lanvin to add an eclectic edge to classic outfits. One of our favourites, though, is Frida Gianni’s jewel toned fedora for Gucci. The fearless colour and feather accent brings a touch of vintage glamour and instantly lifts a cold weather wardrobe. We suggest teaming it with a silk shirt and flared jeans to work fall’s 70s aesthetic.

2. The fur trapper

The-Row-RF11-0006.jpgThe Row fall/winter 2012

Admittedly, this style may not sound like the most sophisticated of hats but for Canada’s chilly climate, it’s the ultimate winter warmer. And when you see the fox fur version that New York scissor sisters Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen designed for The Row, you’ll agree it’s a chic way to boost your cold weather repertoire. Guaranteed to keep you warm when the temperatures drop, style it with everything from a chunky parka to a polished tweed coat to complete an on-trend winter look.

More fall hats on the next page…


3. The fascinator

Jacobs-RF11-0313.jpgMarc Jacobs fall/winter 2012

Kate Middleton may have single-handedly set off an international fascinator frenzy but many designers tipped their hats to the trend for fall. The Duchess’ favourite designer Issa presented some dainty numbers in London while Isaac Mizrahi and Marc Jacobs added more dramatic additions in New York. A sophisticated choice for a winter wedding, this playful piece is also the perfect way to finish a formal look.

4. The flat cap

Burberry-RF11-2699.jpgBurberry fall/winter 2012

Striking cow print flat caps crowned every look of Burberry Prorsum’s acclaimed 60s-inspired runway collection putting newsboys firmly back on the agenda for fall. Adding an instant touch of insouciance, we suggest wearing it with a classic trench to channel the label’s inimitable cool.

5. The beanie

Ilincic-RS11-0453.jpgRoksanda Ilincic fall/winter 2012

A new season’s wardrobe isn’t complete without a cozy, super soft beanie hat. British designer Roksanda Ilincic recently showed some luxurious silk faille beribboned styles for her Spring 2012 collection but for fall, our favourite was shown on Banana Republic’s runway. Canadian super-strutter Alana Zimmer worked a nonchalantly cool look by sporting it with a shearling jacket, tousled hair and barely-there makeup. A chic way to keep warm whatever the weather.

5 master milliners you need to know on the next page…



Stephen Jones
Britain’s wittiest and most erudite milliner, Jones recently brought his collaborative exhibit with the Victoria and Albert Museum, Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones, to New York City.

Philip Treacy
Famously championed by the late Isabella Blow, the Irish-born milliner has designed headpieces for Alexander McQueen and Karl Lagerfeld’s Chanel shows, but it was his creation sported by Princess Beatrice at the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton that made him the world’s ultimate rad hatter. No wonder Lady Gaga is set to intern with the designer.

Karyn Gingras
Considered Canada’s answer to Phillip Treacy and Stephen Jones, Gringas is the go-to-girl for fabulous headgear. Her Toronto-based atelier, Lilliput, is an haute destination for all sorts of jaunty toppers.

Albertus Swanepoel

Swanepoel is having a moment. To wit, Proenza Schouler, Carolina Herrera, Timo Weiland, Derek Lam, Suno, Peter Som and Alexander Wang have all enlisted the South African to produce statement-making millinery for their shows. Tapped as a finalist for the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, his inventive designs aren’t just for the elite; affordable capsule collections are available at J.Crew and Target this season.

Maison Michel
Founded in 1936 and now owned by Chanel, the Parisian couture maison is the new plus ultra of French millinery. Artistic Director Laetitia Crahay, who also happens to be head of accessories and jewelry at Chanel, has added a dose of cool with her coquettish adornments – think lace veils and spiked hair combs – but it’s her felt fedoras finished with the signature monogram that have us swooning.

Read more:
10 great handbags for fall
Monochromatic heels for under $150
Prim, proper and polished