Know Your Newsboys and Flat Caps

Flat caps and newsboys have seen a revival in recent years, and with reason. They are not only warm in the winter, but they are also classily stylish, and almost any well-dressed gentleman can pull them off.

Unlike the bolder fedora, newsboys and flat caps make a softer statement less intimidating and easier to pair with various winter, fall, and spring outfits. Today, we’ll discuss these two fashion accessories, their history, and other topics.

The Flat Cap

A flat cap is a rounded cap made of soft fabric with a short, rounded front brim. There are two types of flat caps, both of which are constructed differently. Because of the single-piece flat construction of the hat’s top, the first has a level, trim silhouette.

The cap’s body is pulled forward over its brim and either snapped or sewed to the brim’s top edge to create a triangular side profile.

The Flat Cap’s History

A flat cap is a flat cap by any other name. The flat cap has an endless list of aliases, including crook cap, ivy cap, cabbie cap (called after London cab drivers), driving cap, and golf cap. However, it is not a newsboy cap.

The flat cap, a classic style dating back to 14th century Northern England, became a more popular accessory worn throughout Scotland, England, and Ireland in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The flat cap was popular among working-class men and boys in the United States by the early 1910s and 1920s.

The Structure of a Flat Cap


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Flat caps are ideal for cold weather and are typically made of tweed or cotton with a satin or silk lining inside. However, today’s flat caps are made from various materials such as cotton, leather, and synthetic blends.

In most cases, the hat is sewn in the back from multiple strips of the same material, resulting in a consistent, smooth appearance. Unlike a newsboy cap, there are no “pizza slices” or a top button in the center.

How to Wear a Flat Cap

A flat cap will complement your wardrobe regardless of occupation or age if you appreciate classic style. When properly sized, they flatter almost all face shapes and can be styled to match informal, casual, or formal attire. Here are some tips for wearing a flat cap:

If you wear a tweed cap, make sure the material contrasts sufficiently with the material of your jacket or coat. Patterns that are too similar will clash, so choose a pattern for one and a solid color for the other.

Shape the cap’s brim to your liking. Many caps have a relatively flat brim, which you can gently (but not too much!) round to fit the head better and contour naturally around the face.

Please do not wear your flat caps backward; Samuel L Jackson is the only person who can pull it off. Also, even if it’s made of “summer” materials like linen, don’t wear a flat cap in the summer; it’s simply not designed for that season. In the summer, wear a Panama hat instead.

Wearing unpinned or snapped flat cap is not part of the original look, even if the snap is functional and tends to be a much more feminine look.

The Newsboy Cap

a man relaxing alone while smoking a tobacco pipe and wearing a newsboy cap on top of a rocky mountain

The newsboy cap, also referred to as the baker boy hat, baggy cap, 8-piece, and apple cap, was named after newspaper boy vendors in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It is similar to many flat caps in style, but it is usually rounder, made with 8 panels, has a fuller crown, and has a button on top. They were widely worn by working men like shipbuilders, dockers, and farmers, not just newspaper boys.

The newsboy cap was a major development in the art of hat-making, similar to most tweed flat caps but with more material employed in its construction. The newsboy cap has recently experienced resurgence due to its prominence in the classic BBC drama “Peaky Blinders.”

The Newsboy Cap’s History

Newsboy caps, also known as newsie caps, newsy caps, or paperboy caps, were popular among working-class men and boys in the late 1800s and early 1900s. As the name implies, this style became associated with young men selling newspapers on street corners or delivering them to buyers’ doorsteps. The upper class adopted the hat, though it was mostly sported for hunting and sports shooting.

Newsboy caps are also called baker boy caps, even though they were never officially associated with baking. Unlike a true newsboy cap, a baker boy hat often has a hatband, making it similar to a fisherman hat but with a smaller brim.

The Structure of a Newsboy Cap

Like a flat cap, a newsboy cap is a rounded cap with a small, stiff brim and a low profile. The newsboys and flat caps are also known as tweed caps because they are typically made of tweed fabric.

Newsboy caps are puffier, rounder, and appear a little baggy. Unlike a flat cap, a newsboy cap is sewn together from the hat’s top, creating eight panels — as a result, a newsboy cap is also known as a gatsby or eight-panel cap.

In addition, unlike ivy caps, newsboy caps are often topped with a button where the materials meet. The eight panels that resemble pizza slices and the top button differentiate a newsboy hat from a flat hat.

Flat caps are sometimes referred to as ascot caps, but structural differences prevent these terms from being used interchangeably. The primary distinction is that ascot caps are much rounder, harder, and do not have a silk or satin lining.

How to Wear a Newsboy Hat (or Newsie)

Men today wear the newsie cap incorrectly, but it has a distinct style. It looks way better than a baseball cap and younger and less tired than grandpa’s traditional flat cap. It can instantly make you look hip and intelligent when worn correctly.

The newsboy must be worn in the same manner as a flat cap, with the front-facing out. Like a flat cap, a newsboy cap looks way better with the peak curved. You can wear the newsboy hat with both casual and smart outfits. 

Learn how to sport a newsboy hat properly, and your style will go from ordinary to exceptional.