I wear a veil to mass. I haven't always. It used to be I would only wear head covering if I was attending a Tridentine mass. Veils are more common in those situations, and I just preferred not to annoy anybody. Later, when I began to wear a veil at every mass, it was purely a personal gesture of obedience, and not a public statement.
Then one Sunday at mass recently, a very nice lady, probably old enough to me my grandmother, and sporting one of those little round lace caps, came up to me and complemented me for wearing my veil. "It's in Canon Law," she said, and she lamented that nobody covers her head any more, and was sooo pleased to see me "setting an example". I was pretty sure she was mistaken about Canon Law, but I didn't have the detailed knowledge I needed to tell her this.
Then, lo and behold, through the magic of the Information Age, today I stumbled across In the Light of the Law, the blog of a canon lawyer, who explains the entire thing quite well, including specific citations. Some of the details are really quite fascinating, and I highly recommend reading the entire post.
The bottom line? Head coverings are indeed optional.
Via Rosetta Stone, via Kitchen Madonna