The Tom Smarte Guide to the Pork Pie Hat
The Pork Pie Hat
The Pork Pie Hat's unique shape lends itself to being quite a statement hat, with a similar construction to the Fedora, Trilby hats and other stylish hats for men.
The pork pie hat first came to prominence in Britain around the late 19th century but became widely adopted in the 1920s after silent film star Buster Keaton wore them in several of his movies. This felt hat, also found in straw, is characterised by having a very narrow ‘stingy’ brim and either a flat or slightly rounded ‘telescopic’ crown. The term porkpie comes from the similarity in shape to the world famous pastry from Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire. As vintage hats, this designer hat is enjoying a resurgence at the moment following it’s starring role in the cult series Breaking Bad, as Walter White’s prop for his alter ego ‘Heisenberg’.
Who the hat suits
A pork pie hat can easily be worn by anyone with a long, short or oval shaped face, but should be avoided if you have either a round or square face. A porkpie tends to have a shorter crown than either a trilby or fedora hat, so is ideal if you’re quite tall and not looking to add any more height. As a rule of thumb, you should look for the brim of a hat to be wider than your jaw line, which is why a porkpie is best to be avoided if you have a round or square face.
How to wear it
As Heisenberg so aptly demonstrates, the best way to wear a pork pie hat is to place it directly on the top of your head and wear it sitting level. Just like the trilby, a pork pie can be worn to complete either a smart or casual outfit.