Gotta photograph that hat!

A few days ago I went for a walk to Swains Lane in Highgate to take take some pictures and try out my new camera lens. It was a lovely autumnal day. On the way back I saw  a woman leaning against a tree waiting for the bus. Her hat caught my eye, a warm wool beret with a tartan bow, all spicy shades of ginger,  cinnamon and turmeric. She like me, had dark,curly hair.  I asked her permission to take a photo and warned her that I might be faffing for a bit as it was a brand new lens!

In a serendipitous coincidence, on Monday night I bumped into the very same woman in Covent Garden. She told me her name is Dorje Khandro:

Here are some other photographs I’ve taken over the years where the hat has been a trigger inspiring me to take a photograph.


My late paternal grandmother, Bibi, (farsi for grandmother), always dressed very formally. Here’s a scan of a photo I took of her circa 1990 when she came over for tea:


Hats and creativity:

I caught sight of this man about to get on the tube at East Finchley. I love the humour and creativity in this hat, and the fact the back of the hat is the focal point with its 2D cardboard cut-out image of a cat’s face and little yellow daffodil next to it.


This man was sitting having a quiet drink in Old Compton Street when I just had to stop and ask him about his cap. His name is Manny and he customised the hat himself with Simpsons lego characters.


Seen on the Portobello Road, I believe this cap started life as a conventional,sober dark grey number. It is now edged in a colourful trim; bold capitals spelling the word LOVE and is extravagantly adorned with feathers, toy camera and miniature red high top boot:


The next two images feature hats with colourful stripes. A crochet hat, in Rasta colours worn by Irina at a London Lucumi Choir rehearsal in 2012. I liked way the knitted flower echoes the sunflowers in the background:

Senior style and hats:

This is the late Francisco,  in a rainbow coloured stripey knitted hat, taken at Bar Italia on Valentine’s Day in 2014:


More senior style, this time Opera bound:


Keeping warm on the C2 bus:


Tex from Texas and friend at a bus stop in Old Street, 2013:

I have edited these images down from a large selection, and have not included any images of people in head wraps, which will be a separate blog post. It will undoubtably include the fabulous Garbo Garbo, whom I previously featured on a post on skulls and fashion. Here is another picture I took of Garbo Garbo at Caffe Nero in Frith Street  back in 2011:


I’ve also felt compelled to photograph signs that feature hats. The escalators and platform at Kentish Town are extremely windy and the following sign is not an exaggeration:

I also really liked the Japanese street signs that show a man in a wide-brimmed hat walking rather dynamically, with a forward leaning posture:



3 thoughts on “Gotta photograph that hat!”

  1. One of my favourite posts, love the photographs and the creativity of the hat owners. But oddly, my favourite is Dynamic Japanese Hat Wearing Sign Man!


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