You know this hat. With its dome-shaped crown and side flaps that are often tied with a black grosgrain ribbon atop the hat, as well as bills front and back, the Sherlock Holmes hat is instantly recognizable. In fact, it’s so closely associated with illustrations of that fictional detective that this hat’s well-known moniker is derived from the character, making this cap the prototype for detectives’ headgear./p>
The Classic SilhouetteFrom the very first actor to portray Sherlock Holmes on stage, William Gillette, to the modern BBC production, “Sherlock,” with Benedict Cumberbatch in the lead role, Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic character has been reprised time and time again, with a singular aspect of the costume serving as the commonality: the tweed helmet known as the Sherlock Holmes hat.
The quintessential detective hat, it’s the silhouette that makes this hat a standout. Making a definitive fashion statement that boldly proclaims the wearer’s originality, the shape of this wool hat instantly identifies not only its style but that of the wearer as well. For the man who likes a hat style that distinguishes him from others, this is the one.
Distinctive PatternsHerringbone, houndstooth and plaid are the embodiment of this hat. Subtle menswear prints, they are commonly used in designing hats in the inimitable style of Sherlock Holmes. Sure, denim, linen, white cotton and even suede versions are available, but it’s the sophisticated and manly prints so often found in men’s suiting that genuinely represent this style.
Take the hats worn by Jeremy Brett in the title role of the Granada Studios production of Sherlock Holmes. In lightweight and heavier fabrics, Brett’s deerstalkers displayed prints with a subtlety much like that of our checkered Fox & Hound Sherlock Holmes Deerstalker in soft shades of grey. Meanwhile, Robert Downey Jr.’s depiction of the detective was so suave as to include an overcoat in the same strong plaid fabric as the hat. These examples explain why men whose signature style incorporates traditional menswear will find themselves drawn to the distinctive patterns of this hat.
Erudite EleganceAs a hat with a certain pedigree, even history, the Sherlock Holmes exudes elegance. Personifying this type of elegance is Ian McKellen’s portrayal of Holmes, eschewing the trademark pipe but not the deerstalker. It is its link to the enigmatic and very astute detective that lends this hat a certain aura of wisdom and refinement. Then the melange of elements that comprise this hat — the shape, the understated print of the fabric, the uplift to the ear flaps — add to its overall polished look.
This dignified combination makes the Sherlock Holmes the perfect accompaniment to the contemporary equivalent of the sleuth’s cape: a trench coat. A classically elegant design with its own association with detectives, the trench coat and the hat make a sophisticated pairing. Naturally, urbane men of cosmopolitan taste will include this hat in their collections.
Country Sporting StyleOf course, as a cap created expressly for deer hunting at the outset, the deerstalker is meant for country stylings. Coupled with the camouflage tones of hunting gear, the tweeds of this hat blend seamlessly. Yet, even in country settings, it’s not just for hunting any more. For outdoorsmen of all kinds, the deerstalker is the ideal head covering, particularly when lined with fur. Similarly, the country gentleman sports this hat as part of his daily attire, presenting at once a relaxed and stately image. For men whose comfort zone is rural life, the Sherlock Holmes is the way the hat of choice.
Answering the question, “What kind of hat does Sherlock wear?” these elements of style reflect the characteristic features that set this hat apart from the rest. The best part is the ability to style it to mirror your individuality, pairing it with fashions that epitomize your personal style. As a result, the next time you discover a Sherlock Holmes hat for sale, buying it won’t even be a question. Moreover, styling it will be your mark of distinction.