The Sky show Babylon Berlin inspires with an exciting story and a powerful visual language. For me, it is the German equivalent of series like Peaky Blinders and Boardwalk Empire, which are a great inspiration for vintage men’s fashion. Reason enough to take a closer look at the outfit of the male lead Gereon Rath.
The hat suits him well
The atmosphere in Babylon Berlin fluctuates between an exuberant party mood and oppressive hopelessness. As a former soldier with post-traumatic stress disorder, Inspector Rath is rarely in the mood for celebration, and you can see that in his clothes. Dull gray and brown tones dominate his clothing. He typically wears a long trench coat over a three-piece woollen flannel suit. Shirt and tie are obligatory – according to the dress code of that time.
One of his trademarks is a grey fedora with a medium-broad brim and dark grey hatband. The high crown of his hat flatters his face. The flabby brim underlines his “crumpled” character.
Room for interpretation
Your own outfit in the style of Commissioner Rath is put together quickly. The choice of color is more important than the choice of material. In my case I don’t wear a cotton trench coat, but a wool coat. The coat should still be long. My example outfit is also dominated by brown and grey tones. But I like to use stronger colors and a certain amount of contrast. This is a matter of taste and everyone should decide for themself. The choice of the hat should also be based more on your own head shape than on the series template, because not everyone of us has a “Gereon-Rath head”. Fedoras also offer a lot of scope for trial and error due to different dimensions of brim, crown, and hat band.
Unfortunately, long coats are currently considered unfashionable and are correspondingly difficult to find. I found my coat in a second-hand store. With a little luck you can find a long trenchcoat on eBay*. Beautiful hats are available for example at hut.de*. The pictured hat is from Rough&Loyal.
Whoever sews by himself can save a lot of money. Instructions and patterns for making matching shirt collars, waistcoats, pants or caps can be found in our sewing book Sewing Vintage Menswear. More sewing instructions can be found on my YouTube channel.
You can also find an explanation in moving pictures about the Babylon Berlin Style on my YouTube channel: