Saturday, March 13, 2010

The artful doffer?

My millions of readers globally have been waiting with baited breath for my erudite comments on more pressing issues, i.e. hats.

We all know that the more distinguished gentleman will wear a trilby, but do we know the finer points of etiquette? I have been described as a little unorthodox (in my trilby-wearing) and so will redirect you elsewhere so that you may be educated:

This link gives you important lessons in hat etiquette including the following gems and my comments:
  • I generally remove my hat indoors, although generally not in corridors or elevators or airports or other places where people are moving about. As a general rule, remove your hat before entering the places you'll be seated. [Do people not sit around in airports? I fear that next time I'm about to flee these shores, I may have a crisis of conscience.]
  • A basic rule is on outside. When inside you can leave it on in public areas; off in private ones, off when you sit to eat. [What if one stands to eat? I think we should be told.]
  • The first time you meet a lady, take off you hat. The next time you met her tipping your hat is acceptable. To show particular respect to a specific lady take off your hat the second time you meet her as well. [What if you're not sure if you've met her before? Is a semi-doff permitted?]
  • In a restaurant, use an extra chair. If you have the guts, put it upside down under your own chair. A side note, to keep from forgetting your hat, drop your keys in it when you set it down. [I like the insinuation that real men keep their hats upside down. I do, however, see a flaw in this advice, I might simply forget both and find myself at home sans keys and trilby.]

My favourite comment so far, is this one:

  • My wife better not ever catch me tipping my hat to a strange woman. I mostly do it at church anyway. [This begs certain questions: Firstly, is extra-marital doffing, strictly speaking, sartorial adultery? Secondly, didn't Saint Paul suggest men don't wear hats in church?


  1. What is your view on the homburg? More stability of crown for the gentleman of quality?

  2. Steal No Hats!
    An elderly man was quite unhappy because he had lost his favorite hat. Instead of buying a new one, he decided he would go to church and swipe one out of the vestibule. When he got there, an usher intercepted him at the door and took him to a pew where he had to sit and listen to the entire sermon on "The Ten Commandments." After church, the man met the preacher in the vestibule doorway, shook his had vigorously, and told him "I want to thank you preacher for saving my soul today. I came to church to steal a hat and after hearing your sermon on the 10 Commandments, I decided against it."

    Preacher: "You mean the commandment 'I shall not steal' changed your mind?"

    Old Man: "No, the one about adultery did. As soon as you said that I remembered where I left my old hat!"

  3. Pons Sixtus:

    Apologies for my delay in replying to your post. A homburg should, I believe, have its place on the hatstand of a gentleman of quality.

    According to this link ( it was the homburg that featured in The Godfather film, giving it a popularity boost.

    In modern times, I fear that the trilby is more fashionable than the homburg and for this reason alone I shall purchase one of the latter as soon as possible.