Captain, my Captain
The Return of the Greek Fisherman's Cap
Words by Billy George
The fisherman's began its journey in the first decade of the 1800s as a cost-effective piece for sailors and factory workers, popular in Russia and amongst the Jewish community. Later that century, the cap was widespread in Greece and featured a decorative cord above the bill along with an embroidered ribbon on the peak. Famous amongst coastal villagers as a uniform that paired with turtlenecks, baggy pants and tall boots.
Commonly seen in black or navy swerved as workwear for the navy throughout the 20th century. More decorative features were emblazoned, such as gold braid or white tops, which were common amongst skippers of sailing yachts or motor boats. In the 50 years between the 30s and 70s, waterproof versions were made - known as mechanic's caps -
that were worn along with blue boiler suits as part of the uniform for truckers, service station attendants and mechanics. Then pop culture came into affect with Tintin heavily featuring the traditional fisherman's cap.
What about now? Since the 1950s, a number of variants have all popped up and become popular in their own right in different subcultures - think Greasers and Ton-up boys, with thanks to Marlon Brando in The Wild One. It became a common occurrences to see the cap in many more every-day outfits, from the 1970s black power movement as an alternative to the beret, a knitted version resembling a Rasta hat, or leather versions worn in the punk-goth scene out of Germany.
The 1960s saw the Greek Fisherman's cap become a desirable accessory to both sexes. Well you have the Beatles to thank for that in their US tour along with Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie and Donovan. After a bit of hibernation, it took on a revival with thanks to the youth in British culture in the late 1990s, followed by a nostalgia drive in most recent years since 2010 as fashion circles had taken huge inspiration from the 70s.
I was a bit of a slow starter with the new trend hitting the fashionable streets of Europe. The Greek Fisherman's Cap. Yep. The old school charm moulded into street style with a modern twist has been huge, especially across the fashion week circles. Bloggers have been quick to take to it and influencers alike are repping it left right and centre following a resurgence to the disco era of the '70s.
If you're any kind of creative, you're almost expected to show some kind of flair - some kind of peculiarity. It just comes with the territory. I know I have a few, from hats to bandanas and many things in between!
The fisherman's cap is more casual than your flat out cowboy hat that I'm usually spotted in walking the streets of the city. It makes it a less scary alternative for those conscious of their appearance. The thing about Greek Fisherman's caps that really make it, is a certain scruffy nature. You can't be prim and proper with it. If you find yourself thinking you look like someone out of The Village People (don't worry there wasn't one wearing one), give yourself a couple of days worth of 5 o'clock shadows and a loose fitting outfit to really settle it in.
What I Wore
Traditional Greek Fisherman's Cap
Coach sling bag
Ralph Lauren button up
Gstar camo cargo pants
Vans slip ons