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The Newsboy Cap: The History Irish Heritage and Peaky Blinders Style

Here at Aran Sweater Market, we are always delighted when a beautiful heritage item comes back around and we’ve seen a huge resurgence in the popularity of the Newsboy Cap in recent years. This is largely due to the impact of the fantastic Peaky Blinders TV series and we are proud to have a selection of authentic newsboy caps in our range.

The history of the newsboy cap is fascinating and we’ll share it with you here, as well as introduce some of our favourite designs. The newsboy cap is now a popular choice for women as well as men and we have great examples to suit everyone in our range. Whether you’re going for 1920s gangster chic or you simply want a practical choice for walks in the unpredictable Irish weather, you’ll love our range of newsboy caps.

Flat Cap to Newsboy Cap

The newsboy cap is a variation on the flat cap, which originated in the 14th century and became a staple garment when males over the age of six were legally required to wear woollen hats on Sundays and ‘Holydays’ in an attempt to boost the wool trade in Britain. This law did not last for long but the flat cap did, and the style endured for centuries, with variations such as the newsboy cap developing.

The newsboy cap is an 8-piece cap, also known as a Baker Boy Cap or a Cabbie Cap, that is looser and baggier than the traditional flat cap, which arrived in America with the early Irish immigrants. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, it became the hat of choice for newspaper sellers and was generally worn by members of the working class. By this time, the style had been adopted by the English upper classes and was becoming popularly known as a Golf Hat or a Driving Hat. These caps have now become a symbol of the early 20th Century and are associated with Irish history and inimitable style.

The Arrival of The Peaky Blinders

Ladies Wool Peaky Blinders Hat - Donegal Loden

The newsboy cap was resurrected to create the ultimate style statement when Tommy Shelby and his gang hit our TV screens. Suddenly, the glamour of the 1920s and 1930s became synonymous with the newsboy cap and men and women began to seek out the classic garment to add a touch of magic to their outfits. The cult TV show was based on the real Peaky Blinders, a gang that operated in Birmingham in the late 1800s and was renowned for its sense of style. Legend tells us that the original gang kept razor blades in the peaks of their caps, but this seems unlikely to be factual, based on the practicalities of using such weapons and the cost of razor blades at this time in history.

In Peaky Blinders, the gang is fictionalised, combining legends of the real Peaky Blinders with tales of The Birmingham Boys, a gang who held sway in the city in the early decades of the 20th century. Throughout the six series of the show, the excellent screenwriting follows Tommy Shelby and his brothers, exploring their Irish Romany heritage and portraying their adventures in some fantastic scenes, almost all of which feature the classic newsboy cap.

The newsboy cap was commonly made of tweed or other woven fabric and our range includes a wide selection of colours and fabrics so that you can be sure you’ll find the perfect option for you. Newsboy caps can be styled with a tweed jacket for a walk in the country or can be used to add an element of fun to your casual outfits. You can even create a stylish look for your wedding party, where your groom and groomsmen can make an impact by adding newsboy caps to sharp suits to emulate the Peaky Blinder’s style.

Newsboy Caps in Vogue

Today, the newsboy cap is more likely to make an appearance on the pages of Vogue magazine than on the head of a newspaper seller, and it has been spotted on many a celebrity in recent years. Harry Styles and David Beckham have both embraced newsboy chic and while designers have experimented with different fabrics and stylistic details, it seems that the traditional tweed style is here to stay.

Newsboy caps for women are a popular choice, from Brigette Bardot to Blake Lively, and we are delighted to see that more and more of Hollywood’s finest are considering the newsboy cap as it looks fantastic and helps to protect them from the prying gaze of the paparazzi. You’ll love our selection of newsboy caps, available in several colours and fabric options, and you’ll soon be making the most of celebrity style.

Newsboy Caps You’ll Love

Finding the right newsboy cap is easy because the style is so versatile and suits almost any face shape. Our newsboy caps for men and women are designed to give you all the practical benefits of a water-resistant, warm hat and they’ll look great with any outfit. Choose your favourite today:

1. Peaky Blinders 8 Panel Cap. The Peaky Blinders 8 Panel Cap is the classic newsboy cap that has graced our scenes in the iconic TV series, Peaky Blinders. It’s a wool blend cap constructed of eight woven panels, and these are sewn together to give a practical and stylish shape you’ll love. This is a great choice for styling up your outfit or keeping you warm and dry in Ireland’s unpredictable climate.

2. Donegal Tweed 8 Piece Panel Cap. This traditional 8-piece panel cap is a popular choice, made from 100% Irish tweed wool in Black Twill with a fleck throughout. The Donegal Tweed 8 Piece Panel Cap is designed with a statement button at the rear of the crown and lined with 100% cotton quilted lining for quality and extra warmth. It’s suitable for men and women and is the ultimate statement piece when you want to upgrade your look.

3. Ladies' Wool Peaky Blinders Hat. If you’re looking to make an impact for all the right reasons, you’ll love the Ladies Wool Peaky Blinders Hat. Although the original Peaky Blinders would have opted for a colour that blended in, the Donegal Sunshine design is reminiscent of the classic newsboy shape and is both flattering and unique. It’s made from 100% wool, including 30% alpaca wool that is handwoven and hand-finished so that your cap is as individual as you are.

4. Ladies Tweed Newsboy Hat. We love this contemporary update to the classic newsboy cap, made from 100% wool tweed with a decorative leather rosette to enhance the style. The Ladies Tweed Newsboy Hat is available in one size but is discreetly elasticated at the back so that it can adjust to fit. The grey shade is a subtle and attractive option that oozes sophistication and will top off any outfit to perfection.

5. Ladies Wool Peaky Blinders Hat - Donegal Loden. Our stylish newsboy hat is available in several colour options and we especially love the Ladies Wool Peaky Blinders Hat - Donegal Loden. This is a beautiful colour the way that is designed to reflect the gorgeous natural colours of the Donegal countryside and it will look great with any outfit this season. The subtle pinks and greens will turn heads and you’ll find yourself reaching for this gorgeous cap again and again.

6. Donegal Tweed Men’s Driving Cap. The Donegal Tweed Men’s Driving Cap is a timeless design, handmade from 100% authentic Irish tweed wool with a gorgeous black fleck throughout. It is made in the classic newsboy style with a traditional peak and button fasting, setting off the Herringbone tweed to perfection. It’s a style that works for men and women and the subtle charcoal shade is a great way to embrace the newsboy design without stepping out of your comfort zone too far. It’s also available in several other great colour options so you can choose a colour that complements your wardrobe perfectly.

7. Ladies Tweed Newsboy Hat - Navy, Sky & Green. Our range includes several impressive colour combinations and this women’s newsboy hat is the perfect example. The Ladies Tweed Newsboy Hat in Navy, Sky & Green is inspired by the beautiful natural colours in Killarney National Park, home to the Mucros Weavers Studio. It’s made from 100% Wool Tweed with a leather rosette that adds a unique touch of style and the beautiful colours simply pop. We love the practical elasticated back that ensures a good fit, and we can’t wait to see this stunning hat out and about in Ireland.

Whatever your style, there is a newsboy cap to complement it and we will be delighted to help you find your favourite. You’ll soon find yourself planning outfits around it and you’ll wonder how you managed without this essential item in your wardrobe.

How to Wear Your Newsboy Cap

Ladies Wool Peaky Blinders Hat - Donegal Sunshine

The newsboy cap and its inspiration, the flat cap, have endured for centuries and there’s no reason to think they’re going anywhere soon. If you want to get on board with this trend, you’ll find the perfect newsboy cap in our range at Aran Sweater Market and we’ll share our top tips to help you style it up to perfection. The trick is to consider your newsboy cap as a key part of your outfit, rather than just grabbing it on your way out of the house. You can style up your favourite outfits with a newsboy cap in an eye-catching colour or opt for a neutral shade that will give you the effortless chic factor.

There have been many iconic images of the newsboy cap and the flat cap over the years and styling yours to look fantastic is easier than you might think - it’s not just for celebrities! A newsboy cap is a surprisingly flattering style and the first step is finding a cap that fits you well. You should measure around your head, just above your ears, with the tape running across the middle of your forehead. This will enable you to find your hat size, and when you’ve chosen your perfect cap, gently put pressure on the brim to give it a slight curve.

Keep your look simple, unless you’re going all out for a costume party, and style your cap with contemporary casual clothing or a classic formal suit for an eye-catching look that isn’t overdone. The beauty of this look is in its simplicity and this is especially important if you have chosen a cap in a bright colour or pattern. Don’t be tempted to wear your newsboy cap backwards, it won’t do you any favours!

Discover Newsboy Caps at Aran Sweater Market

You can find our newsboy caps on our website or or come and visit us in one of our stores, located in the Aran Islands, Galway, Killarney or Dublin to find the perfect fit for you. We have a great selection of flat caps, wool hats and driving caps and we will be happy to help you find exactly what you are looking for. We stock only the finest Irish craftsmanship and you’ll love our range of Aran sweaters that originated on the Aran Islands many centuries ago to protect the inhabitants of the Islands from the elements as they worked in the harsh climate.

We have a wide range of clothing for men, women and children as well as a beautiful selection of blankets and throws for the home. We are committed to preserving Irish heritage and traditional skills and we believe that our contemporary designs reflect the cultural history of our beloved Ireland to perfection. At Aran Sweater Market, we know you’ll find new wardrobe staples you love and we can’t wait to share our selection with you.