The Black Forest is not only being associated with Black Forest Cake, Black Forest Ham and Cuckoo Clocks but also with the so-called Bollenhut – a PomPom Hat which comes in 2 colors. The Bollenhut consists of 11 handmade pompoms (14 pompoms altogether but only 11 are visible). The hat can be up to 2 kilograms heavy and comes in the colors red and black. The rule is that unmarried women wear a red hat until their wedding. Once married, they wear a black hat.
Although the Bollenhut is one of things people might associate with the Black Forest, it is actually only being worn in 3 communities – Gutach, Wolfach-Kirnbach and Hornberg-Reichenbach. The origins of the hat and the appropriate dress can be traced back to the mid-1700s which makes it one of the oldest Black Forest Costumes. These days it’s only worn on holidays or other big events. Click here to see some of the Bollenhut pictures we took over time.
The latest marketing campaing of Gutach shows a VW beetle wearing a typical Bollenhut. Watch out next time you are driving on the Autobahn!