Karl Lagerfeld straw boater


Spring/Summer 1988
Karl Lagerfeld
Straw, cotton
Museum Purchase

Mariner hats—known as boaters—have been popular with women since the 1880s, when they were stylish accessories for yachting ensembles and tailored suits patterned after menswear. Karl Lagerfeld (b. 1938) has reinterpreted this now-classic millinery design in multiple collections, both for Chanel and for his eponymous label, as shown here. In an irreverent take on the yachting theme, Lagerfeld morphs the ridged straw brim into an exaggerated arc—certainly difficult to navigate in a strong headwind. The hat is faced with a painterly rose-motif chintz, a pattern out of sync with the nautical hat, but bold enough to highlight its impressive circumference when worn by a model sailing down the runway.



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