Golden Press

The Big RED Hats

Photographer: Jarondakie Patrick - August 2010

Women dressed in purple attire with big red hats sit at a table in the lobby within the Manchester Hyatt in San Diego. Full-sized, petit, elderly, middle-aged, and happy. Black, White, Caribbean, and Asian women are all content in the moment of fun. The elevators open and more ladies step out dressed in purple with red hats. The lobby becomes loud with greetings and daring personalities that refuse to hush. They are bragging about shopping, having fun, drinking, and carrying totes of red shimmer and purple shine.

Doctors encourage The Red Hat Society for women suffering from depression and recovering from cancer.

But what exactly is The Red Hat Society?

Kathy Taylor from Decatur, Ala., says the Red Hat Society is a group of women who are 50 plus who look for the joy in life. An organization as The Red Hat Society has been established since 1991 and has a membership from women all over the world.  

There are official chapters located in the U.S. Australia, and England.

The organization describes itself as being made up of mothers, daughters, grandmothers, and women who just enjoy life to the fullest. They are a group of women who break conformity rules like fashion and being silly in public. This is one of the reasons Taylor decided to join.

She began as a pink hat, or “lady in waiting” as the group calls women who are under 50 years of age. The pink hatters wear pink and lavender until the age of 50 when they have a “red-uation” or graduate to wearing red hats. Taylor decided to join the Red Hats after noticing the ladies at events she attended.

“I just saw them and thought they were hilarious,” Taylor said.

Taylor remembers first seeing the women walking around with big red hats and leashes but no dogs.

“The red hat society gives women an outlet,” Taylor said.

She describes the organization as a place for fun, fellowship, traveling, and an opportunity to meet women from all over.

She is looking forward to her birthday this year, when a Red Hatter switches to purple for the year.  “For our birthdays we switch our colors,” Taylor said.

Taylor and other ladies who have a birthday after this year’s Red Hat Society conference will be wearing a purple hat next year with red attire.

Photographer: Jarondakie Patrick - August 2010


August 11, 2010 - Posted by | Fun Topics, International


  1. would like information on how to join mad hatter .

    Comment by julia lavigne | April 16, 2011 | Reply

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