Hat Etiquette for Women at Funerals

Women should choose black or dark-colored hats.

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Although funeral etiquette isn't as strict as it used to be, some universal rules apply to what you should -- and shouldn't -- wear while attending a funeral. Hats are still commonly worn by women in the South, and head coverings are often required at the funerals of people who belonged to a particular religious faith.

Styles and Accessories

There's no strict rule regarding the style of hat you can wear at a funeral. However, certain styles are always fashionable and appropriate. Large-brimmed fedoras, cloches and fascinators with veils are proper styles. Sunglasses are perfectly acceptable, and they help hide puffy eyes. Jewelry is also appropriate -- just avoid too much bling.

Colors and Accessories

Dark colors are always appropriate for funerals; this rule applies to hats and clothing. Funeral attire should be black, navy blue or dark grey. Lighter, neutral colors aren't off-limits, but hats in cheery colors like yellow, orange and bright green aren't appropriate unless the family of the person who passed away specifically requests funeral attendees to wear them.

Region and Etiquette

Women can wear hats to funerals no matter where the funeral is taking place. However, hats are more commonly seen in some regions of the country, such as the South. When women wear hats to funerals, they aren't usually required to take their hats off when entering a church. However, it's wise to bring a head scarf, just in case you're required to take off your hat and you're worried about revealing your hair.

Ethnicity and Religion

Wearing hats to funerals is common among certain ethnic groups. Some religions require women to cover their heads with a head scarf for funerals or memorial services. If you're not sure what's appropriate, don't be afraid to ask someone close to the deceased person about the preferred attire.

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