Although trends come and go, a noticeable feature of modern women's fashion is the demise of the hat as an essential part of a woman's look. In the past it was seen as shocking if a man or a woman appeared in public without wearing a hat. Whilst the particular style of hats changed, the fact of the hat itself remained the same. A whole part of culture developed around the etiquette of hat wearing: men would 'doff their caps' to ladies, and ladies would cause a scandal if they went bare-headed in certain places, such as in churches.

The beginning of the decline of hat wearing among women can possibly be traced to the Second World War, where material was scarce and clothes rationing saw many women going without hats, which were suddenly seen as extras. In their place, hairstyles rose and became more elaborate. After the war, the increased use of cars is often claimed as a reason why hats did not return to their previous popularity. Nowadays hats are very much seen as being optional extras: useful in hot weather to protect the head from the sun, or in extreme cold, and essential at Ladies' Day at Ascot, but something that can easily be forgotten the rest of the year round.

As well as the practical benefits of wearing a hat, the elegance of a well-made piece of millinery can add glamour to any outfit. It is a shame that the art of hat wearing seems to be dying out.

Author's Bio: 

Sarah writes about fashion such as the latest jeans to help people look good.