December 22, 2014

Look Sharp on the Road with These Fun Winter Hats

The folks at Tilley have included several fun and functional travel hats in this yearís winter line. In this article, Iíll take a look at three of them.

This Canadian travel gear company has been making road warrior products for some time now, and all three of the hats Iím reviewing in this piece feature two of the features Tilley is known for: secret security pockets and discreet, tuck away ear warmers. While the secret pockets will be easy to find for those familiar with the product line, others will have to search for a bit. I know I did. And thatís a good thing. Any extra bit of security you have access to while traveling is an asset.

While the pockets wonít protect you against a good wind Ė thatís the job of the ear warmer flaps Ė they are a great place to tuck an extra 20 bucks in case you get caught somewhere unprepared. Speaking of the flaps, when you donít need them, they tuck discreetly away inside the winter caps. When the wind picks up, pull them down for extra warmth.

The Cosmopolitan Hat

This is more an uptown city hat for the daily commuter or urban tourist on a road trip. Thereís a slit in the back to allow to accommodation of a winter coat collar, and stylish leather hat band trim with ribbon-width bow in the back. This gives the cosmopolitan hat an extra touch of femininity without being over the top, in my opinion. Thereís no hidden size adjuster in this one as far as I could tell, but the ear flaps and secret pocket are included as usual. With the way I travel, I would probably only use this hat on day trips, or vacations where Iím taking my own vehicle. Since it isnít an easily packable piece as far as daypacks, briefcases and luggage go, youíll need to make sure youíll be wearing your hat for most of the day or have room in the back seat of your car for a small hat box. Still, itís a stylish hat made of wool felt and has a classic style that will take you through the cold weather seasons year to year. Pair it with a cashmere sweater and fun scarf, or perhaps a trench coat.

The Pub Cap

As a travel writer and on-the-go media professional, I give this one props for being the most packable and portable. It easily tucks into a tote or section of my messenger bag to come out when I need it. The pub cap is new to the Tilley winter hat collection, and provides fashion support for a variety of looks, from Bohemian to classic Euro, and even a fun menswear look if thatís what youíre into. In addition to the ear warming flaps and secret pocket, the pub cap also has an easy size adjustment strap stitched to the inside. While it doesnít show from outside at all, you can easily tweak the firmness of your fit to suit the inclusion of a headscarf, elaborate hair style, etc. I wore this cap to a media outing and paired it with a mid-hip tunic sweater, denim skirt and black leather knee boots. It looked great and packed easily into my gear tote when I needed the brim out of the way for shooting images.

The Tec-Wool Cap

I found this cap particularly interesting because the Tilley site has it listed as a unisex item and pictured on both male and female models. The tec-wool cap has an internal size adjustment tab just like the pub cap and would pair well with standard winter jackets as well as with the military-styled fashion items that seem to be all the rage these days. Wearing a simple tee shirt with cargo pants? Youíre good to go. Trench shirt with military styling and waist band? Also a fun pairing.

There are several more hats in the Tilley line obviously, but these three offer classic style options along with flexibility and warmth. Any current Tilley fans out there? How have you enjoyed your gear purchases?

Photo Credits: Tilley

Editorís Note: In order for me to thoroughly and properly review the products in question, the Tilley corporation forwarded samples of these three hats for my research. The opinions expressed here are my own, and were uninfluenced by the people of the Tilley company.