This post is intended as a friendly discussion of such headgear- it doesn't have to be particularly lolita. Images are taken from various sources around the net- as much as possible I will try to credit the source, but my folders are a mess and the filenames don't always indicate where an image comes from. If you own/recognize some of these, please tell me so I can credit properly, thanks!
EDIT: corrected a couple terms and a rogue block of copy-paste
I made this post partly out of curiosity, and partly because I am always on the hunt for alternatives to the full-sized hats and head-eating bows. Reason one being that I have a large head and very thick hair. A wig does not help matters, and most of the time I can't even force hats down over the top of my head.
Reason two is that I primarily wear Classic lolita very heavily influenced by Dolly Kei (or vice-versa, if you want to get technical- since it's mostly vintage offbrand). Headbows tend to look out of place in more antique styled coordinates.
Source: Grimoire Almadel/Tokyo Fashion
Source: Aerynsys -'the Pirate King' coord
One of the classic 'pirate hat' shapes. Though I'm not sure how to coord these outside of nautical-inspired lolita (pirate sweet = ???) these are without question, THE pirate crowning glory. I think only AATP makes these- I can never find hats on Taobao.
Common part of navy and military-inspired coords!
mimielle: Very versatile in wearing styles and trim options but perhaps better restricted to certain clothing styles.
Source: SANAKANIN (personal blog)
Bonnets are not really 'alternative' anymore- with the rising popularity of OTT Classic they've become more common.I think bonnets are great because they can fit a large range of head sizes (very important! xD) and their relative plain-ness leaves plenty of room for customization simply by pinning stuff on.
- customizable, comfy, and fits a variety of head sizes
- can be floppy (soft bonnets, whatcha gonna do...)
- is it just me, or... they make your face look a bit.... weird o_o I think it has to do with the added height causing visual distortion
Source: SANAKANIN (personal blog) / Michelline Syjuco
For the truly OTT (and rich) princess. Mind, I don't own this coronet. It was part of Michelline Syjuco's new release and she graciously allowed us to try the pieces on. I was justly terrified of tangling and/or destroying such an expensive piece in my wig- but gladly there were no problems.
- As crowns and the like are very intricate pieces- good luck, if it gets tangled in your hair.
- There is always the fact that these are jewelry- on the other hand it is unlikely for someone to attempt to snatch your bonnet off your head.
Source: Grimoire/Valerie Fujita (feat. Heri)
P.S. Heri dear, ilu.
This is, afaik, little used anymore. I have no hats like this, so I can't say for sure, but most likely it would be tight on my head- nevertheless Heri is wearing it at an angle here, so that may be a non-issue.
Source: SANAKANIN (ToxicKitty)
Ah, flowers. Pin them anywhere, and they work. Lately these two-piece rose clips have become my fallback accessory when I can't seem to match anything to my outfit.
Image: Keira Knightley
MOTHER OF ALL HATS, THIS IS.
I haven't the faintest idea where I could find a hat like this within budget constraints, not to mention I'd be scraping it across the roof taking all sorts of public transportation- still. MOTHER OF ALL HATS.
Source: SANAKANIN (here and here)
These are made of fabric, and take very well to pinning all sorts of junk on to match outfits. Flowers, brooches, and chains (found a use for them! yaay) are all game.
Source: Kats-Hats, among others
Hello, pic spam. Clearly someone wanted to go off on a tangent about hennin. I'm sorry.
This is not a complete listing of the styles of hennin(s?), omitting the long cone-shaped hennin because of the possibility of taking someone's eye out- but I think simpler variations of these could actually work with opulent lolita (JetJ comes to mind). The downside is that no one produces these except bespoke commission artists like Kats-Hats. I don't imagine they'll be affordable, exactly. But it might be an interesting challenge for crafty lolis.
Image: Kiyohari (can't find a link, sorry)
For simplicity's sake, I am filing them in the same category as antlers. Neither is locally available here; and so, short of picking up branches and painting them to look like antlers, I can only appreciate them via pictures online.
While most of the headgear on this list are unusual, searching for 'horns' will probably get you the oddest looks from shopkeepers- that or they'll point you towards the plastic light-up devil horns.
Image: Grimoire (feat Heri)
Admittedly this is more of a Dolly-Kei thing. While I am not fond of turbans that cover the whole head (I see you just stepped out of the shower!) worn as a hat I find it kind of nice. Does anyone know of any tutorials that teach you how to wrap ordinary scarves around your head to achieve the look? :D
Top hats (mini)
Image: SANAKANIN (my first attempt at ouji)
Obligatory top hat. Buttcape has written a long and detailed article on what makes mini hats acceptable (and unacceptable); go check it out!
because I don't know what they're called and this post is pushing the limit
Source: Surface Spell (Lady in Black hat)
Source: Cloudberry Lady