Large Heads and Tiny Hats


I blame the constant rumination of information that courses through my brain on the fact I was born with a rather large head. Something has to fill this vacuous expanse. Silly musings and semi-intelligent ramblings echo around and compete for real estate within all that gooey gray matter. Though I agree, the size of one’s head does not intelligence make, there must be some evolutionary purpose for an above average head circumference.

Don’t get me wrong. It’s not that my head doesn’t match the rest of my body. So if you are envisioning a huge head flopping over to one side due to its sheer weight while attached to a pencil-thin neck on the body of some petite little thing; your vision is incorrect.

I come from Xena Princess Warrior stock. My DNA chain consists of Viking plunderers, Irish bar maids and staunch German Fräulein. I was born weighing 10 pounds and 3 ounces for goddess sake.

And my mother wanted me to be a ballerina…

It took many years for me to grow into my rather long feet, which from day one served as a counter-balance to my head. By the time I reached High School I had grown a pair of curiously long legs like some creature out of Dr. Seuss and I towered above most of my friends, both male and female. My cross-country coaches were able to pick me out of a pack of runners from miles away due to my model-like upright stance. While I ran, it was important to keep my head balanced over my size 10.5 Nike’s, or the forward momentum caused by the bobbing of my head would send me tumbling. Lucky for me, by the time I reached the age of 18, I had grown gracefully into these two end points of my physique.

But then there was the problem with hats. The two things I adored most in life were shoes and hats. If I had been born a boy, the fact I had big feet and a large head would have been a non-issue. But because I was born female and graced with this Viking, Irish, German conqueror physique, I soon discovered the fashion industry’s blatant discrimination against women with Amazonian proportions. All the cute, feminine, tiny little hats were way too small for my massive noggin. On more than one occasion I was able to squeeze my head into a charming little chapeau and prance about the room. But the consequence of that action was a pounding headache and a barely functional brain due to the restriction of blood to my cerebral cortex. All this for the sake of style.

I have absolutely nothing against the people of the Philippines. Nor of the rest of Southeast Asia, Mexico, Hong Kong nor even China. I embrace and celebrate our differences and honor our universal similarities as human beings. However, if models with the physical proportions of the tiny, teeny little people in Gulliver’s Travels are going to be used to create patterns for the production of hats and clothing headed to market in the United States, a little cultural sensitivity training is in order. When you label a hat with “One size fits all,” what exactly is it that you mean? I think you meant to say “One size fits all, well, except for those of you who were born with really big heads.”

True, there are always baseball caps with their adjustable straps that fit if I expand them out to the very last snap. And of course there are knit hats of every flavor and most stretch far enough to cover my crown without too much restriction. However, I get tired of explaining “no, I am not on a softball team” or “no, I am not headed off to the half-pipe with my snowboard.”

Just once in my life I would love to wear a really, really cute, tiny, teeny, little feminine hat for the experience. Maybe something adorned with lacy bows or even a fluffy feather or two.

But there is hope. I recently spied a photo of Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie at the Royal Wedding and realized I am not the only one who struggles with the issue of ill-fitting hats. I was pleased to feel a strong sense of camaraderie with this obviously large-headed duo who were able to balance these lovely, tiny, teeny, feminine chapeau right atop their massive noggin’s. Their sense of style became such the rage that Beatrice’s hat eventually sold on eBay for $131,000. I hear there are knock-offs on the market that can now be fetched for mere dollars.

Regardless of whether I ever stumble across the right hat for my massive head or not, my heart and ruminating mind feel extraordinarily gladdened. In fact, I believe I have just stumbled across the evolutionary purpose for my enlarged head. I was unequivocally born for royalty. Of this my own mother would agree. She has always told me “you have champagne taste on a beer budget.” True that. I also have the attitude to match. I mean, someone needs to be Queen, right?

About tracyth76

I am a professional photographer, obsessed iPhoneographer, freelance writer and website designer located in Northern, California. View all posts by tracyth76

4 responses to “Large Heads and Tiny Hats

  • Madge Woods

    This is the best Tracy. More insight into you. I love the topic. My DIL is a size ten shoe and she buys online. Try Zappos, they have everything and free shipping both ways.

  • Hollye Dexter

    Oh Tracy, yet another way we are soul sisters. I too have a massive noggin and though I’m only 5’5″, I have the big feet to balance it. Hats were never made for me, sniff sniff…the 80’s were tough. My children also suffer from large head syndrome. No hats for us! ( although the stretch knit caps that are now popular were a lifesaver) At least we know we are not alone in the world.
    Bobbleheads unite!

  • Debra

    GREAT column! I have trouble fitting into hats for the same reason! I also am Xena Warrior Princess and Viking stock! 😀
    And, I have size 10.5 feet too… an unfortunate size that is very hard to find.
    And screw those little people patterns. They’re making all the clothes too. 😛

  • Judy

    Ah, sister Vikings! So glad to know you’re out there. No one can say our feet are not firmly planted on the ground!

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