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Date: 2/19/2017 5:31 PM UTC

You have to go back to the beginning of the Kentucky Derby to find the answer to why Ladies wear hats to the Kentucky Derby…Drum roll…now a little History which you can quote to your friends at the Derby while sipping a Mint Julep:

In 1872, Col. Meriwether Lewis Clark, Jr. (grandson of William Clark of the Lewis and Clark expedition) traveled to England to attend the famous horse race known as the Epsom Derby which had been running annually since 1780.  He became very keen to bring this spectacular English society horse racing affair to the US.  Horse racing was common in the US, but it did not have this social prestige.  With the promise of gifted land from his uncles, John and Henry Churchill, Col. Meriwether and his wife set about marketing the idea to the ladies and gentlemen of Louisville, Kentucky society. On May 17th, 1875, approximately 10,000 spectators wearing “full morning dress” enjoyed al fresco meals while watching fifteen three-year-old thoroughbreds thunder a distance of 1 1/2 miles.  Ladies and gents dressed in their finest…including HATS!  .  “Women coordinated their hats, dresses, bags, their shoes and their parasols,” said Ellen Goldstein, a professor at the Fashion Institute of Technology. “To go to a horse racing event was really a regal affair."

Thus the Kentucky Derby became not only the most famous thoroughbred horse race in the US, but also a celebration of fashion, southern culture and tradition. This year, May 6 will be 143rd running of the “Run for the Roses.” 

With cameras clicking and worldwide press coverage, ladies and gentlemen of today can be recorded in their regalia.  The Derby is all about the HAT!  Browse through the PHOTOS of Ladies wearing their Hat-A-Tude Hats at the Races through the years at HAT-A-TUDE.com. (Dropdown Button at top of homepage)

Ladies, please choose the Hat first!  It is so much easier.  Call (888)832-0630 or Email me, Kathi, your personal hat designer, for a Free consultation.   Your Derby Hat will make a Statement and I will help you make the right Statement!


PS/ Plan your Hat & Outfit early.  Ground shipping @ Hat-a-Tude is Free. Express is not!

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Date: 11/9/2016 9:50 PM UTC

With proper care and storage, you will enjoy your HAT-A-TUDE Straw hat for years!

1. STORAGE: All HAT-A-TUDE Hats come in a Hat Box or Storage Bag (use for long-term storage). Hats have different brim and crown shapes and need to be supported accordingly. The softer the brim….the more forgiving. A flat brim hat should be stored FLAT. If stiff brim has a flare or swoop, support the interior of the crown so it doesn’t rest on the brim. The most delicate part of a Hat is the Crown! Always stuff the Hat crown with tissue for storage and DO NOT stack hats on top of one another! Of course Hat Boxes do stack! Do NOT ever hang a straw hat on a hook…hat will become so misshaped it will never be repaired! Do NOT leave in the car…the sun will bleach and dry the straw.

2. CLEANING: This really depends on the type of straw and type of spot. Often an alcohol wipe will take off lipstick or makeup. My white or ivory hats with the more flexible large brims, I spot clean with a terry cloth or soft toothbrush (only for sturdy straws) which I have dampened with mix 50/50 water and CLEAR dish detergent ( I like Dawn but hard to find the clear…don’t use the colored ones!) Be very careful with colored straws…they may not be colorfast.

3. DUST: The best secret I have found is the aerosol dust canisters (for electronics)! Point and blow the dust away is short bursts! Great for feathers, flowers and ribbon (also for any silk flower arrangements).

4. BENT BRIM: Soft flat brims….I put the hat on an ironing board, use an iron set on low and a damp paper towel and press out the crease. The steam does the job! If hat is a stiff Sinamay straw, use some steam from iron (don’t press!) or clothing steamer (what I use) and manipulate with your fingers to reshape. FYI: What makes Sinamay stiff is a “starch” so too much moisture will turn it a gummy mess! Always allow any hat to DRY NATURALLY before wearing. Never run under water directly!

5. A straw hat is NOT an umbrella! So please don't wear your hat in the rain. Many real silk flowers & dyed feathers are not colorfast and may water spot or bleed. Carry a light weight bag if you are going to the races or outdoor event…ask and I will include with your Hat purchase (will fold up in your handbag). Or in a pinch, use a dry cleaning bag. Hint: I have been caught in the rain on my bike (A lot in FL Summer downpours) and every bar/restaurant/stadium has light weight trash can liners…works perfectly! Drop hat in and knot! Wahoo….dry hat when I get home!

ENJOY! Kathi, Your Hat Designer! 

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Date: 10/7/2016 7:05 PM UTC

Why am I talking about this?  Because I am frequently asked about shipping options and have to explain why a lightweight hat costs so much to ship.... I am about to SHARE.  Of course if you have no special delivery time issue and are just taking advantage of  HAT-A-TUDE's FREE SHIPPING...read no further! HaHa!

For those people curious or ordering at the last minute...this Blog's for you!

One of the most common misconceptions is:   All shipping goes by weight.   Not so!
I ship Hats, which are light weight (seldom over 6 lbs) and go in larger boxes.  However, the box can be anywhere from 12 x 12 x 12 to 20 x 20 x 20 inches in size.  USPS (and ESPECIALLY UPS & FedEx) ships by volume (size) so a 16x16x16 box weighing 4# costs to ship as follows:

Here are some cost comparisons:

1)  16 x 16 x16 inch box (4 lb. weight) ships USPS Ground Florida to California for about $25.00.  This service is FREE from HAT-A-TUDE TO YOU!

2)  16 x 16 x16 inch box (4 lb. weight) ships UPS Ground Florida to California for $65.00.   One inch in box height is $37.00 more in cost!

Soooo....When time is not an issue, I can offer you FREE SHIPPING via USPS Ground in the Continental USA!  I will contact you with the expected delivery on your Hat.

Now comes Express Shipping:  Hat-a-tude uses USPS (US Postal Service) Express, which can be 1-2 days, depending on your location.   Why? 

Here is the reality of why I use USPS Express:

1)  USPS Express: From Florida to California: About $52.00.  HAT-A-TUDE has a FLAT EXPRESS RATE OF $48.00!!  You do not pay more (unless outside USA).

2)  UPS Next Day Air for same destination:  About $235.00   (billable weight 30 lbs.on larger boxes) ....YIKES!  

Bored Yet?   My clients and their hats are my primary concern.  I want you to receive your hat in good condition and in a timely manner.  The Post Office has a better record for me than UPS.  I pack hats in a Hat Box or a Custom Storage Bag for XL Brim Hats and then in a corrugated shipping carton...Each one packed with Love & Care!

Kathi, Your Hat Designer!

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Date: 9/12/2016 5:29 PM UTC

I sell my hats by your Head Size in inches. This is unique but far more accurate. It does rely on you (maybe with help from a friend) measuring your head. Please don't guess! Use a soft tape measure and measure snuggly to the nearest 1/8 inch the widest part of your head just above the ears and about 1" above the eyebrows: Blue line on the face below. (**No tape measure? Use a string and then lay on yardstick**). The bigger the brim, the tighter the fit required. 

Please Note: Ladies hat sizes (from extra small to extra large) can vary according to hair style/volume & head shape so please remeasure your head even if you have ordered a hat before. My women's hats are sized in inches. Ladies hats are like ladies clothing and size can vary with style & material. I will do my best to match your measured size to the hat size.  

If your head size is in between or different from size offered for the hat you are choosing, please note your ACTUAL size in the "Comments" section of your HAT-A-TUDE order. I can adjust most hats a 1/2 inch or so. For sizes larger than 23 inches, styles are limited.

For in between sizes and usually XS (UNDER 21 INCHES), I will include a self-adhesive terry sweatband which reduces the size of the hat by 1-2 sizes. These make the hat very comfortable and prevent it from slipping. Please contact me if you are in doubt about size and so I may work with you personally.   Please don't guess!  An ill-fitting hat is not flattering!  Let me help you look your most "FABULOUS".  

Email kathi@hat-a-tude.com or call toll-free (888) 832-0630 if you would like a free consultation. 

Kathi, Your Hat Designer!
 More Than a Hat, An Attitude

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Date: 2/20/2014 6:52 PM UTC

Why choose your Kentucky Derby Hat before your outfit?    Because it will make it easier to assemble your Derby outfit!  Then with "hat in hand" go shopping for your dress!  
About your outfit:  Go simple in style and print...plain or bold designs will not compete with your hat and smile.  The Derby is ALL about the HAT! Pick up a punch of color with the hat trim...flower or feather.  I can customize the trim on most of my hats.  If you already have your outfit and it is a floral or graphic pattern, choose the color of the hat to match the background and pick a dominant color in the print for the hat flower. 

At HAT-A-TUDE.com you will find information on choosing a hat style and measuring your head.  Pictures of Ladies in their HAT-A-TUDE Hats are in the Photo Galleries.

Email kathi@hat-a-tude.com or call toll-free (888) 832-0630 if you would like a free consultation.  NOW is the time, while I have the time to help you.

Order early...Free UPS Ground shipping with HAT-A-TUDE.  Express shipping is an extra charge...far better to spend money saved on a new pair of shoes!

Kathi, Your Hat Designer
More than a Hat, an Attitude!

Posted by HAT-A-TUDE | 1 Comment

Date: 10/22/2013 7:36 PM UTC

Which Hat Brim Style/Size is Best for Me?

Some guidelines I use to help you choose the most flattering Hat for You:

A tall or larger lady can wear a lot of hat. A petite lady will find a smaller/lower crown hat more flattering. This refers to the overall size of the hat not just the inside diameter. I specialize in fitting ladies at either extreme of the scale:  Extra small to XL head sizes and tall to petite women.

The Style hat that looks great on every Face Shape is the PICTURE HAT.  It is just a matter of choosing the correct BRIM SIZE for you.
Kentucky Derby  6" Brim Hat with Pink Lily
Kentucky Derby Hat / Black 6" Brim A hat should generally be no wider than the width of your shoulders. Broad shoulders...wide brim hat; narrow shoulders...shorter Brim Hat.  An exception is the 8" Brim Picture Hat (often called a "Cartwheel Hat")...then it is the DRAMA!

 Picture Hat  8" Brim 
Picture Hat  4" Brim
Picture Hat 6" Brim

Picture Hat 5" Brim

My next blog will explore some other brim and crown styles.  

Let me help you choose your perfect hat!
Email Kathi@hat-a-tude.com or call (888) 832-0630


Posted by HAT-A-TUDE | 1 Comment

Date: 8/22/2013 6:15 PM UTC

How To Wear Your Hat.....


So how do you wear your Hat?
A hat is meant to frame your face.  The brim should be parallel to your eyebrows (unless wearing the hat at an angle or jaunt) and a finger's width above them.  Handle your hat with both hands by the brim, on either side of the crown.  It will damage your hat to pinch or crush the crown.  Holding your hat, look inside the hat and line the label up so it will be centered at the back of your head when you wear it.  Place the inside front edge of the hat on your forehead and put the hat down and back setting it down ON your head firmly.  Adjust its placement in front of a mirror.  Some hats look good with a little "jaunt"or angle to the brim.  Do not wear a hat on the back of your head!  It will only blow off.  It is generally more flattering to have the sides of your hair back from your face (behind your ears), since hat and long hair closes in your face.  

How NOT to wear a Hat?

Wearing a hat improperly distracts from your face and your look.  In most magazine pictures it seems a hat has been plunked on the head as an afterthought. A picture speaks a thousand words!  What is wrong in the picture below?   It shows how NOT to wear a hat or your hair with a hat....This fedora is on crooked, plopped on the back of the head and her hair is hiding her face.  Read more at HAT-A-TUDE.com


Questions or assistance?  Email Kathi@hat-a-tude.com or call (888) 832-0630

Posted by HAT-A-TUDE | 1 Comment

Date: 10/11/2012 6:51 PM UTC

This year at Ascot a fascinator was only acceptable at the event if it covered 4 inches (note 4 inches minimum) of the head.  Kate Henry on the Hat Academy site asks a question to define universally what is a fascinator/cocktail/headpiece?
According to one response " Pieces made with combs etc which are less than 4 inches in circumferences are HEAD PIECES plain and simple.   A fascinator is a headpiece, a style of millinery. The word originally referred to a fine, lacy head covering akin to a shawl and made from wool or lace, but mostly feathers. In the modern usage, it refers to a woman's alternative to hat for formal attire; it is usually a large hair decoration on a band or clip with elaborate trimmings and decoration like a formal hat and it can incorporate a base to make it a miniature hat.  Today, a fascinator may be worn instead of a hat on occasions where hats were traditionally worn—such as weddings—or as an evening accessory, when it may be called a cocktail hat. It is generally worn with fairly formal attire."

Personally, I feel the line between a fascinator, cocktail hat and headpiece has become blurred.  In recent years (after Kate), fascinators became increasingly popular for the Kentucky Derby.  However, if you are going to Ascot be certain to check on the requirements for head "apparel"!   Kathi  HAT-A-TUDE.COM

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204 37th Ave N
Unit #141
St Petersburg, FL 33704
(888) 832-0630

Hat-a-Tude 204 37th Ave N Unit #141 Saint Petersburg, Florida 33704

TOLL FREE (888) 832-0630

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