A sunhat is compulsory for outdoor play in school and preschool playgrounds across Australia, and childcare centres too, now that summer’s here. We’ve found some wonderful hats and hair accessories to help kids personalise their back-to-school style.
Acorn hats are an old favourite of ours, and looking at the gorgeous prints and styles, it’s easy to see why. For older girls, the Millie Trucker Cap ($34.95) echoes its baby bucket hat cousins with the pretty floral print, but the shape is 100 per cent hip big kid style. And what’s not to love about the Isabelle reversible bucket hat, shown above ($36.95). Gold polka dots on one side and a vintage floral on the other, it’s a stunner either way you look at it.
Acorn does boys’ styles just as well as girls’, and while it’s tough to choose a favourite, the Zebra Bucket Hat ($36.95) in teal, black and white is our current obsession.
Bedhead Hats come in loads of styles and patterns, but what we love best is the fact that they’re all rated SPF50 for maximum protection from the sun. They’ve also got a wide brim that’s anti-flop so kids never have to peer out from under their brims to see where they’re running.
The Denim Ruffle Hat ($30.95, pictured above) is sweet and goes with anything, and school hats are available too, but our favourite is the Secret Garden Hat ($34.95) for the ingenious ponytail peep-hole at the back.
A hat round up isn’t the same without Oobi, designers of some of the brightest, most joyful prints around. Oobi makes a big range of reversible hats so that when your daughter is ready for a change, she’s got something new with a quick flip of her hat. We’ve got a sweet spot for the Sophia Candy Heart Hat ($29.95) with its rainbow stripes on one side and red and white hearts on the other.
Target’s Rainbow Trilby Hat for boys ($15) is a vibrant, fresh take on the classic straw original. It’s also versatile: we envision it atop the head of a mini skater, finishing off an adorable linen suit ensemble at the races or blocking the sun at an outdoor birthday party.
In Sydney it’s virtually impossible to walk by a high street toy store without being tempted by the rack of colourful Toshi hats outside. The prints are gorgeous, the brims super wide and the chin straps can be cinched snuggly so that kids can’t toss their hats off at the park, as kids are wont to do. The boys’ Storytime styles ($35) in Zoo and Scooter are especially lovely this season.
Sometimes simplicity and restraint are virtues, but sometimes kids just want a hat that’s the brightest, fanciest thing they can get away with. The Hat Store’s Girls Bucket Hat in Paisley is the best of both worlds: the traditional bucket hat shape with its wide brim and chin strap lend all the practicality of a good hat choice, while the bright blue and pink paisley print and lovely trim around the brim make it a perfect topper for a pretty sundress and sandals outfit, or a plain school uniform.
At school when hats come off, girls can still retain their individuality with some creative hair adornments. Melbourne designer Peggy stocks some gorgeous sparkly options like the Diamante Crown Headband ($19.95) or hair clips ($7.95 – $9.95)
If diamante crowns aren’t allowed at school, the fabric button hair ties from My Kookie Jar are more subtle but still a lot of fun. They can be worn in ponytails, at the ends of plaits or even as bracelets.
There are plenty of schools with a uniform code, but that doesn’t mean hair accessories can’t still be fun. We’ve found a great place – School Pride – with all manner of headbands, clips and ponytail holders in school-approved colours, but with plenty of pizzazz too to please the fussiest misses.
School Pride has button clips, headbands (below), bows and even sweet heart-shaped ponytail elastics in colours and fabrics to match dozens and dozens of primary-schools right around Australia, priced from $3.50.