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What Is a Tuque?

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  • Written By: Janis Adams
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 14 December 2014
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A tuque is a close-fitting knitted hat. It is commonly referred to by many other names, including beanie and skull cap, among a host of others. The tuque is worn not only to keep a person's head warm, but also as a fashion accessory.

Traditionally, the tuque has a brim on it. The width of the brim differs greatly from one style to another. Although most are made with a brim, many tuques are fashioned brimless for a tighter, neater look.

Tuques are made from a number of different fibers, both natural and synthetic. Wool is one of the most common fibers used for these knitted caps, as it is a natural fabric that allows for the head of the person wearing it to comfortably sweat. Synthetic fibers cause the sweat to be trapped on the person's head, leaving the head cool instead of warm, even though someone is wearing a hat on her head.

The tuque has become an iconic symbol of the dock worker. The dock worker would traditionally be pictured donning a dark-colored tuque, pulled low and tight on his head, and a pea coat. Both items were worn to help him weather the strong elements associated with working so close to the water.

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Though traditionally thought of as cold-weather gear, the tuque has now become a popular accessory worn by those who favor the fashion-forward trend of dressing in street style. These hats, which are worn as fashion statements, are both loose and tight fitting and can come in any number of colors and knits. This popular and stylish headgear is worn even in the hot summer months.

Tuques are a unisex apparel item. Although men were first pictured wearing them, women now find them a popular accessory as well. Often, to make this hat a bit more stylish, a pom pom or a variegated pattern will be added to those made for women.

It is the old-fashioned tuque that is placed on a baby's head shortly after birth. This is done to keep the baby's body temperature at an even level. This baby-sized beanie causes warmth and heat not to escape from their bare heads.

This hat, styled centuries ago, has continued in its popularity without abatement. It is a functional and popular item because of its versatility. It is nearly always a one-size-fits-all item, so anyone can find one to their liking and wear comfortably it.

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