Historically, veils were just another design element associated with hats, as common as today's trimmings of flowers, feathers, and ribbons.
In the 1940's veils were so ordinary that Norman Rockwell included a veiled woman in his painting
"Waiting for the Veterinarian"
I've photo-copied the picture in full, and below is a close up of the lady in the upper left hand corner.
She is apparently visiting the vet with her black standard poodle, which is seated obediently by her side. A trip to the vet, just another mundane errand to run. "Let's see," I imagine her saying, "Where did I put my veiled torque?"
Personally, I am both fascinated and puzzled by veils. Fascinated because veils were worn with such aplomb by the likes of Katherine Hepburn, and other fashion icon as contemporary as Madonna. Puzzled, because I am never sure when to wear one.
Currently wearing a veil at any time other than down the aisle on one's wedding day causes children to stare, and men to rush over to strike up conversation.
Explanations are demanded, and I really can't come up with a good one, except I like how veils look on a hat, and am slightly less sure of how I feel about how they look on me.
My dad recalls his 1890's born aunt, (who later held a degree from Columbia and a Masters from USC) as frequently wearing day hats with veils. She appeared, as he put it, mysterious.
Here are two veiled hats I've created, that I actually do wear frequently. They are just the thing to make me feel elegant, and casual at the same time on a hot humid day. And if someone thinks I look mysterious in them, well then, so much the better.