The Smoking Cap: Tasseled Headgear for True Style Afficiandos

A smoking cap is a type of headwear that was popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries. It was typically worn by men while smoking tobacco pipes or cigars and was designed to keep the head warm while absorbing smoke and preventing hair and clothing from smelling of tobacco.

smoking caps
Smoking caps made by Baturina Homewear
burgundy gold tassel smoking cap
Burgundy velvet cap with gold tassel

What is a smoking cap?

The smoking cap is usually made from soft, comfortable materials like velvet, silk, or wool and features a tassel or pom-pom on the top. It is typically a close-fitting cap, often with a visor or a folded-up brim. Some smoking caps also have a long, decorative tassel on the back that hangs down from the cap.

Smoking caps were often decorated with intricate patterns, embroidery, or monograms, and were a popular accessory among fashionable men in the 19th and early 20th centuries. They were often worn as part of a gentleman’s evening attire and were considered a symbol of sophistication and luxury. Smoking caps and dressing gowns were primarily worn during leisure activities, providing a comfortable and relaxed attire for men in their private spaces. They allowed individuals to unwind, enjoy hobbies, or engage in activities like smoking, reading, or lounging.

Today, smoking caps are not as common as they once were, but they are still available from specialty clothing retailers and are sometimes worn as part of historical reenactments or costume events.

robe smoking cap tasseled brown
Cap and matching robe
Navy and black skulls smoking cap


The smoking cap, also known as a “fez” or “opera cap,” has an interesting history. Its origins can be traced back to the Ottoman Empire in the 19th century. The fez was originally worn by men of all social classes in the Ottoman Empire, and it gradually gained popularity beyond its borders.

The fez became a fashion trend in Europe and North America during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It was often associated with leisure activities and relaxation, particularly smoking. Men would wear the fez while enjoying tobacco, and it became a symbol of sophistication and refinement.

In the Western world, the smoking cap was commonly worn indoors, especially in private spaces such as smoking lounges or one’s own home. It was often made of velvet or other luxurious fabrics and featured a tassel or a pompom at the top. The cap typically had a close-fitting design, covering the head and ears, providing warmth and comfort. Smoking caps and dressing gowns were primarily worn in private spaces, such as at home or in dedicated smoking lounges. They created a sense of intimacy and privacy, allowing men to relax and enjoy their personal time away from the public eye.

While the smoking cap’s popularity has waned over time, it remains a notable part of history, reflecting the fashion trends, cultural traditions, and social contexts of its era.

Where to buy smoking caps?

In modern times, smoking caps are not as commonly sold as they were in the past. However, you may still be able to find smoking caps through various sources. Here are a few potential options:

  • Vintage or Antique Stores: Vintage or antique shops often carry a wide range of items from different time periods, including clothing and accessories. You might come across smoking caps in these stores, particularly if they specialize in historical or period-specific merchandise.
  • Online Marketplaces: Online platforms like eBay, Etsy, or other vintage-focused websites can be a good place to search for smoking caps. Many sellers offer unique and vintage items, allowing you to explore a broader selection.
  • Specialty Haberdasheries: Some specialty hat shops or haberdasheries may carry smoking caps as part of their inventory. These establishments focus on high-quality hats and accessories, and you may find a selection of smoking caps in their collections.
  • Custom Orders: If you’re unable to find a ready-made smoking cap, you could consider reaching out to local tailors or hat makers who specialize in custom designs. They may be able to create a smoking cap tailored to your preferences, using appropriate fabrics and traditional craftsmanship.

At Baturina Homewear you will find a wide range of smoking caps, made from a variety of stunning fabrics. Each cap can be paired with its matching lounging robe to complete the full look.

How our smoking caps are made

At Baturina Homewear, each smoking cap is individually made. We use a wide range of fabrics such as cotton velvet, jacquard, brocade, satin and more. All fabrics used for our smoking caps are either available in extremely small quantities or leftovers from producing robes and pajamas. That way we repurpose fabric leftovers and create unique, matching caps for all our robes.

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