It’s an odd time to wear hats. The most common baseball caps are dad hats, bucket hats are making a comeback, and cowboy hats are coming into town. The Bass Pro Shops trucker cap represents the fusion of these ostensibly dissimilar fashion trends. Due in large part to TikTok, this plain $6 cap with mesh panels and a fish-shaped logo has suddenly emerged as the most in-demand hat.
This trend was identified by The Wall Street Journal in December 2021, and all these hats are still in style half a year later. However, this pattern was well underway when The Wall Street Journal noticed it. The popularity of these hats has been questioned by a regular stream of primarily perplexed commenters on Reddit since April 2021.
What is so special about this hat?
- It’s difficult to dispute their usefulness, regardless of whether you like the way they look. They come in a variety of colors, are less expensive than most hats, and because they are trucker caps, they are lighter and more breathable than traditional ball caps. It makes sense because you got it, fishermen were the target market for these ball hats. Naturally, not all trends are determined by usefulness, and this is also true in this case.
- A surprise item has been added to the list of things in short supply this year, joining the likes of washing machines and cream cheese: the renowned snap-back mesh trucker hat from Bass Pro Shops.
- The store’s website now only provides four selections, Black, Olive, Gray, and Red, and even those are in limited supply. Normally available in a wide spectrum of striking hues.
- The $6 hats, which have long been a symbol of rural outdoor activity, have more lately entered the mainstream, being worn by people from diverse backgrounds and regardless of whether they have ever baited a hook.
Why this hat is trending now?
The Bass Pro Shops hat is the ideal miniature of a few trends that have started happening over the past few years, even though it is impossible to pinpoint this trend’s beginning. The irony is one trend, to put it briefly.
- The tackiest fashion trends from the early 2000s have made a significant reappearance; odd layering, pointless embellishments, and unflattering denim are all current trends. There are crocs throughout. Without going all aughts cosplay, the mesh paneling and lofty crown of the Bass Pro hat harken back to the era when the Von Dutch trucker cap ruled supreme. The idea is that the folks wearing them have probably never fished or even set foot inside a Bass Pro Shop.
- The adoption of blue-collar, middle-American values and work clothing by cool youths and white-collar creatives is another driver of the hat’s popularity, and it may be more problematic. Right now, Dickies and Carhartt are the manufacturers of the most fashionable pants, not high-end designers.
- People who sit at workstations are sporting double-knee jeans, while those who want to stand out in the city, not fit in with the trees, are sporting Realtree camo. A similar tendency may be seen when one shows up to a trendy restaurant in New York City wearing a $6 fishing trucker cap.
Whether it was Coco Chanel’s Breton stripes, the incorporation of punk rock and hip hop into high fashion, or the resurgence of hiking apparel, fashion has always been about taking clothing and placing it in a new context.
Most of us couldn’t wear jeans if people could only wear business clothes. Even if you’re not an angler, it seems like a breathable, reasonably-priced hat should be fair game. However, you’ll be prepared if you ever decide to go fishing by knowing what to wear. Or perhaps it would be too obvious to go fishing while wearing a fishing cap.