Brimming with Style: The Revival of Bucket Hats

Sometimes one tends to lose her identity in fashion. Following high fashion too closely, a person can forfeit beauty or style. The only way to buy clothes is to suit yourself . When I couldn't find a hat that suited my needs, I designed one. It was comfortable, stayed on my head in the wind, protected me from the sun and so I had it made in all colors. Dior put it in his collection in a much-exaggerated style and called it the bucket hat.

Bucket Hat Heaven

From Louise Brooks, to Mrs. Maisel, to Jay-Z, the bucket hat has weaved it’s way in and out of style. Originally designed as a fishing hat or Irish country hat, the squat style is now a favorite of musicians, Hollywood and the sporty set.

But there was a more stylish version for women.  A spinoff of the more curved cloche hat.  The bucket style with a higher crown and straight or slightly slanted sides made it’s debut in the 1920s.   Bucket hats so named because they looked like an inverted bucket.

1920s bucket hat
An early bucket hat from 1923
1920s cloche hat advertisement
Cloche hat ad from 1923

Eva Bartok

Buckets took a bit of a break during the 1930s & 40s.  In the early 1950s, the Hungarian-born actress and model Eva Bartok started sporting a mod-style bucket.  She took credit for the design in a 1957 interview.  Bartok, known for her glamorous style, and her love of hats popularized the style, often wearing the look with tailored suits and coats.

Eva Bartok wearing a bucket hat
Bartok in one of her famous bucket hats

Rocking the Look in the 1950s

Whoever invented the style, buckets really took off in mid-century America. Most hat designs from the 1930s through the 1950s called for specific hairstyles to show them off in the best light.  Women didn’t have this worry with buckets.  They covered the entire head.  Christian Dior did indeed show the design.  Other renowned milliners such as Lilly Dache and Chanda followed suit.   Dache’s bucket hats were typically adorned with bows, flowers, and other feminine embellishments, while Dior’s designs featured more tailored lines and often incorporated patterned or plaid fabrics.  Chanda made both styles.

1957 Newspaper Dior article & part of a 1955 fashion spread
1950s Christian Dior Hat
Vintage floral bucket hat from Chanda
1950s Floral Bucket Hat from Chanda
shop bucket hats
1950s Stove Top Bucket by Chanda

The 60s, 70s & 80s

In the 1960s, French designer Pierre Cardin brought a futuristic twist to the bucket hat, creating designs that featured bold geometric shapes and bright colors. Cardin’s innovative designs made the bucket hat a staple of the space-age fashion movement.

PIerre Cardin

Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, the bucket hat remained a popular accessory, with designers like Halston and Yves Saint Laurent incorporating the style into their collections. The hat was often paired with flowing, bohemian-style dresses and other relaxed, casual clothing. 


1973 YSL hat
1970s Bucket hat with upturned brim by YSL

Hip Hop & Now

In the 1990s, the bucket hat experienced a resurgence in popularity that is still going strong thanks to its adoption by streetwear culture. Rappers and other musicians embraced the hat as a part of their signature style, and the trend quickly spread to a wider audience.

Although the menswear bucket hat remains a runway staple with designers like Marc Jacobs, Gucci, and Burberry, we hope with the popularity of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” that a more stylish version returns.  Then you can add it to your bucket list! (Sorry, had to do it). 🤣

The marvelous mrs. maisel hats
It's a Maisel Bucket Extravaganza!
Courtesy of Amazon Prime Video
vintage hats at

P.S.  Speaking of hats, check out this fun blog post from In Their Own League, Top 5 Hats from Mrs. Maisel.

Photos copyright © 2023  MadgesHatbox Vintage.  We are a proud member of Got VintageCheck out their website.

Comment Below

Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x