Today is National Felt Hat Day. According to the National Day Calendar, felt hats used to be made from wool. Rabbit and beaver were other popular choices. Nowadays, they may be created with synthetic fibers.

The phrase “mad as a hatter” came from the use of toxic mercury in hat-making that caused users to exhibit signs of dementia. Unfortunately, the hat makers in those days didn’t realize they were poisoning themselves.

I admire all styles of hats and learned more about them for Star Tangled Murder, my work in progress. Before this, I’d never heard the term fascinator or perch hat. I tend to wear sun hats with wide brims whenever outside under the Florida sun. Hats protect your face from wrinkles and sunspots and your skin from cancerous growths. It’s important to cover your neck as well, so nix the baseball caps except as a source of shade for your eyes. You can even buy hats with sunscreen now.

When you watch old movies, note the types of hats worn by the characters. I miss those days when hats seemed to make an elegant statement. Millinery making is an art and a skill. Look for craftsmen selling handmade hats at local festivals and stop to admire the artistry.

What is your favorite kind of hat to wear? Do you miss the days when a hat was an essential piece of wardrobe?

Also, while you’re here, click over to enter our September contest!