Until recently you’d probably think the bucket hat was well and truly consigned to the archives of fashion but it has experienced an unlikely renaissance and all of a sudden it is one of the most fashionable accessories in menswear for the summer of 2015.
There has been an influx of trends re-emerging from the 90s of late- think of ripped jeans or neon macs- and he bucket hat is one which is definitely best associated with that era. Made famous by the likes of LL Cool J and perhaps more significantly Britpop idol Liam Gallagher, the bucket hat is arguably going to be more popular than ever this summer and here are some ways you can introduce the item to your personal look.
Also known as a fisherman’s hat or else a crusher hat, the design is commonly referred to as a bucket hat because it has a wide, sloping brim, typically made of a heavy duty material such as denim or canvas. It’s a very old design which often still has original features such as two circular metal eyelets for ventilation.
In the 60s it was associated with high fashion for a brief period but other than that it has almost always been considered as a practical item, mostly used for sun protection. Nobody really knows the true origins of this style of hat but it can certainly be traced back to at least the beginning of the 1900s, when hunters and fishermen alike would be able to easily pack them on their respected excursions.
There are a variety of similar styles such as the pillbox and cloche hats from different eras and different parts of the world; for example in Asia there are a number of traditional head-wear garments which bare resemblance to the bucket hat. In terms of fashion though, the bucket hat reached its peak in the late 80s and the 90s when celebrity figures began to wear them, because once this happened it inevitably filtered down into mainstream fashion.
Hints of a revival have been evident for a while now and you’ll have no doubt seen Pharrell Williams, Chris Brown, Justin Bieber and even Rihanna championing this ubiquitous look. The proof is plain to see- more designers than ever are producing them; just look at Lacoste, G-Star RAW, Barbour and Ralph Lauren in the Mainline Menswear collection. When the big brands all design one in the same season, you know it’s a trend worth taking note of- check out the bucket hats at Mainline Menswear:
The initial appeal of a bucket hat in terms of fashion was its care-free and easy-to-wear credentials, helpful to throw on without a second thought of outfit choices and probably allowing the wearer to feel as if they were at a summer festival in the process. That sentiment is the same today and arguably the best outfit to wear with a bucket hat is one which references the 90s era of fashion.
They come in all sorts of shapes and styles as well as colours, some more subtle and refined, others bold or eccentric. Street-wear ready labels are often the safe choice for any 90s inspired look so brands like Penfield, Franklin Marshall, Crooks and Castles and Humor.
Bucket hats are a distinctive item from the 90s era, just like Levi’s pale 501 jean and the Nike Air Max 90s. Team these together and you have an authentic retro look, ready for the street.
It seems you don’t have to be a rapper or a skateboarder to wear a bucket hat any more, nor does the weather have to be hot. The bucket can be worn in any season and seemingly with any outfit. Try this slightly more refined look– a simple t-shirt, bomber jacket, jeans and trainers.