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I am often asked how to find the right style of hat. Or where can a hat be worn other than weddings? Many ladies think they can't wear hats, but I find, as often as not, that it's simply a matter of how it's worn. I'll attempt to answer your hat questions in this section.

When trying on a hat, a floor length mirror is important to give you the 'whole picture'. Take into account how your selection affects your body shape. Generally, brims should extend only as far as the shoulder width. However, there are times when you may want a large brim for a big statement. Is the crown the right height? Does it make you look taller? Is that what you're going for? Does it make you look squashed under the hat? Try on several styles to develop an eye for what's right for you. Stand back from the mirror and look for the total effect.

Consider face shape. If you have an oval face, lucky you. You can wear almost any style. If your face is round or square avoid a crown that boxes you in. Try to angle the brim. Think of the line of the brim as a line that continues onward. An angled brim creates a diagonal line. The eye perceives that line as continuing and adds height. A taller crown lengthens the face. This would be desirable on a round face, but not on a long face. A longer face shape would call for a wider brim and shallow crown. Think balance. A round face requires a taller crown to lengthen the appearance. Accent vertical lines if you need height. Accent horzontal lines for width or shortening.

Even if the hat is a great color, totally in fashion, consider, is it a great color for you? The wrong color may make eyes appear sunken and dark. Often I've seen a lady try on a hat and her face simply lights up! Then you know it's right. If your skin is sallow, avoid olive or orange tones. A wonderful tan looks even better in white. Very dark skin tones may look even darker in black. If you always get compliments when you wear pink or blue then those are good colors in hats, as well. If warm tones are your best, then stay with the autumn or spring tones.

Hair... what to do with hair? Very long hair will probably look best pulled back to the nape of the neck or on top. If you have chin length hair try tucking it behind your ears or pull the front part up. Short hair offers the advantage of being out of the way, but also offers less options.

The most common mistake with wearing hats is that many women wear them tipped too far back and look like 'Suzy Sunshine'. Another common mistake is wearing them too straight across the front. Remember that continuing line. A straight line is usually unflattering and makes one look squatty.

Where can you wear hats? Weddings, of course. Funerals. But, why not wear a hat for shopping? You'll be amazed at the outstanding and courteous service. Lunch is the best excuse to wear a hat. What could be more feminine than a couple good friends enjoying lunch wearing lovely hats? It will make everyone wonder what the occasion is. I'll wager you'll have the best service ever. At first you may feel conspicuous, but after you wear hats a few times, you will come to enjoy the admiring glances. They don't think you're silly, they're just wishing they were brave enough to do it.

Most important of all, how do you feel wearing the hat? If you feel marvelous then you will exude confidence. You will walk taller and straighter. You will personify class and personality. What could be wrong with that?



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