Hat Terminology

There's a lot to know about hats! We've compiled a list of words which you might run into while visiting our site, or that you just might find interesting.

Baseball Cap
Cloth cap with a wide peak at the front. Originally worn by baseball players with the team monogram on the front panel.
Beret
Cap of felt, felted jersey or fabric with a soft, wide, circular crown. Some berets have an interior headband.
Bicorne
Men's hats of the late 18th and early 19th century. Wide brims were folded up to form two points. Signature hat of Napoleon.
Biretta
Square cap worn by clergy.
Boater
Oval flat-topped straw hat with a rigid flat brim. Also called a sailor or a skimmer.
Bowler
Oval hat with round, rigid crown and modeled brim. Also known as a derby, because the style was made popular by the Earl of Derby in 19th century England.
Brim
The horizontal part of a felt or straw hat. The brim may be turned up, turned down, or up in the back and down in the front. Hats with the brim up in the back and down in the front are called "snap brims"
Bucket Hat
Fabric hat with a flat-topped, slightly conical crown sloping brim.
Cap
Low profile fabric hat with a small peak at the front.
Chef's Hat
White, starched bonnet worn by chefs.
Cloche
Women's hat of the 1920s with a round crown and a modeled brim.
Cocked Hat
Bicorne or tricorne hat.
Cowboy Hat
Hat with a high crown and a wide brim originally worn in the American west by cow hands. It is usually made of felt, leather, or straw.
Crown
The vertical portion of a felt or straw hat. Many times there is a crease or "pinch" in the crown.
Crush Hat
Collapsible top hat
Deer Stalker
Fabric hunting cap with visors both at the front and the back. It has earflaps that can be tied up over the crown. Also known as Sherlock Holmes hat.
Derby
See Bowler
English Driving Cap
Low-profile cap, originally only for men, with small brim at the front. Crown may be tailored with side panels, or gored.
Fedora
Felt hat with a lengthwise crease in the crown, and a medium brim.
Fez
Conical, flat-topped cap of fed felt, once made only in the city of Fez, Marocco. Men's headcover.
Felt
A material made of short animal fibers which are interlocked when kneaded in hot water and steam. Felt hats can be made of either fur felt or wool felt.
Forage Cap
Military cap with a small brim, also typical for police uniforms.
Fur Felt Hat
Felt hat usually made from rabbit fur. Beaver fur, or a blend, is used in the finest fur felt hat.
Garbo Hat
See Slouch Cap
Gatsby
See English Driving Cap
Gaucho Hat
A black felt hat with a wide flat brim and shallow flat-topped crown.
Glengarry
A Scottish cap with pointed front, usually a pair of trailing ribbons at the back.
Godfather Hat
Hat style similar to a homburg
Gossamer Hat
Lightweight muslin hats sized with shellac and used as bodies for silk plush hats.
Helmet
1. Protective head-cover: for soldiers,aviators, motor-cyclists, miners, bee-keepers, fencers, etc.
2. Military head-dress
Homburg
Men's felt hat with a soft lengthwise crease in the crown, and a narrow slightly rolled brim. Made popular in the 1890's by Edward, Prince of Wales (later Edward VII), who borrowed the idea from the hat of local militiamen in Bad Homburg, Germany.
Indiana Jones Hat
Felt hat with a pinch in the crown and a wide turned-down brim.
Irish Walking Hat
Fabric hat with a high crown and a sloping brim.
Ivy Cap
See English Driving Cap
Jockey Cap
Cloth cap with close-fitting 6 panel crown and wide brim at the front.
Mitre
Head-cover worn by bishops, characterized by two peaks.
Mortarboard
Flat, square head-cover worn by professors and students for solemn academic occasions.
Newsboy
Large, soft, 8-panel fabric cap with visor.
Panama Hat
Straw hat hand-woven in Ecuador, made from the jipjalpa palm tree. Originally sold in Panama, hence the name "Panama Hat".
Peak
See Visor
Picture hat
A hat with a very wide brim, worn tilted to the side of the head.
Pillbox
A small brimless cap with a flat tip and cylindrical side.
Pith Helmet
Helmet of cork or pith (dried spongy tissue from the sola plant), covered with cloth.
Poor-boy Cap
Large, soft, 6 or 8 panel fabric cap with visor and peak button-snap. Sometimes with ear flaps. Also called a newsboy.
Porkpie
Hat with a flat-topped crown and a small brim. There is a circular indentation in the crown.
Puritan
Black felt hat with high conical crown and narrow straight brim, worn by the Puritans during the 17th century. It was usually trimmed with a buckle at the front.
Sailor
See Boater
Sherlock Holmes
See Deer Stalker
Skimmer
See Boater
Skull-cap
Small, close-fitting cap of fabric, knit or crochet. When made of fabric it usually has six gores.
Slouch Cap
A soft hat with a high crown and drooping flexible brim. Also called a Garbo hat, from the name of the actress who wore the style in many films.
Snap Brim
Hat with the brim up in the back and down in the front.
Sombrero
Mexican hat with a high, conical crown and very wide brim. Usually of straw or felt.
Stetson Hat
Stetson is a brand name of fine quality dress and western hats. Many times a western hat is referred to as a Stetson.
Stocking Cap
Knitted cap, usually conical, often finished with a pompom.
Stovepipe Hat
A tall 19th century top hat, made popular by the U.S. President Abraham Lincoln.
Tam-o'-Shanter
Beret with close-fitting headband, usually trimmed with a pompom.
Ten Gallon Hat
See Cowboy hat
Top Hat
Tall, cylindrical, flat-topped hat with modeled brim.
Toque
1. Small hat for women with no brim, or small turned-up brim.
2. French term for a chef's hat.
Trilby
Felt hat similar to a fedora.
Tricorner
Men's hat of the 18th century. Wide brims were folded up to form three points.
Turban
1. Typical head-dress for Muslin and Sikh men, constructed by winding a long scarf around the head.
2. Women's head-dress resembling men's turbans.
Veil
Cloth, often transparent, or netting used to cover the head and/or the face, for women's head-dress.
Visor
A partial brim, usually extending out at the front of a hat or cap. Also known as a peak.
Western Hat
See Cowboy hat
Wool Felt Hat
Hat made of felted wool.
Yarmulke
Skull cap worn by Jewish men.
Zucchetto
Skull-cap worn by Roman Catholic clergy: black for priests, purple for bishops, red for cardinals and white for the Pope.