The difference between style and fashion is quality.
What do you call a Russian fur cap with ear flaps that can be tied up or let down? It is a called a Ushanka hat.
I got my hands on a vintage black Ushanka a few weeks ago and fell in love with the practical yet fashionable design. If it is mild, flaps up – if you are experiencing colder temperatures like we are in Ottawa, ON right now, you wear them down.
I had always seen these hats sported on television, mainly in movies with soldiers. It definitely is the trooper “tuque” of choice and a staple in the winter uniforms of the military.
Speaking of television I have all of two channels at home and stumbled across a recent special on Canadians and Russians and what they each think of old man winter. Interestingly enough not one Russian man I saw during the entire show that was filmed wore his ear flaps down – even in frigid temperatures. In Russia (and maybe elsewhere in the world) it is not considered manly or masculine to wear the flaps down.
If you are into hats and looking for one of these to add to your collection it can also be called a Shapka, Aviator hat or Trapper hat.
Be sure to look at the tag to see if it is made of real fur or not. In more recent years since these have become popular faux fur has been used more frequently when making these hats.
You can find these on eBay for between $25-$400. The range has everything to do with authenticity.
I personally gravitate towards the Soviet Russian Ushanka boasting a badge.
Keep warm and cozy in one of these ear-flap hats today!