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Fatdutchman
12-08-2006, 11:34 AM
You know, I would think that we today are probably FAR more concerned with our hats than people were in the '30's-'50's. We have to have our creases just so, our pinches just right, our brims must be cocked in just a certain way.... We (and I am certainly included in this) will spend hours steaming, and pushing, and poking, and pulling, and pressing, and shaping our hats, going back and forth to the mirror to check our progress! Did most folks do this in the '30's?

When I watch old movies, I like to look at everyone's hat. Especially good are the crowd scenes, where all the extras are milling about, or witnessing the actions of the lead characters. MOST of their hats are less than perfect! The top bash usually looks like they simply mashed their fists into the crown. The pinch was done very quickly and the hat shoved on their heads and off they went!:)

I don't know about you, but I couldn't stand going out with an imperfect hat!!!:eek:

jamespowers
12-08-2006, 11:42 AM
Well, in a world where everyone wore a hat, the only character or difference you could add would be your own special touch. A hand bashed hat was one of these. They generally were not perfect.
I wear several that are not perfect just to be different even now. I work in the yard with a beater Champ that has separated at the pinch. I will even wear hats with moth holes if they are not too noticeable. :D
A hat was a utilitarian part of the wardrobe then. It got rained on and a ton of other wear enducers. ;)

Regards,

J

moustache
12-08-2006, 11:42 AM
You know, I would think that we today are probably FAR more concerned with our hats than people were in the '30's-'50's. We have to have our creases just so, our pinches just right, our brims must be cocked in just a certain way.... We (and I am certainly included in this) will spend hours steaming, and pushing, and poking, and pulling, and pressing, and shaping our hats, going back and forth to the mirror to check our progress! Did most folks do this in the '30's?

When I watch old movies, I like to look at everyone's hat. Especially good are the crowd scenes, where all the extras are milling about, or witnessing the actions of the lead characters. MOST of their hats are less than perfect! The top bash usually looks like they simply mashed their fists into the crown. The pinch was done very quickly and the hat shoved on their heads and off they went!:)

I don't know about you, but I couldn't stand going out with an imperfect hat!!!:eek:



Ditto!!!
I agree most certainly!!!

JD

feltfan
12-08-2006, 11:43 AM
I could stand more risks and imperfections with my hats
if I knew I could go to a hat store and buy another one,
of comparable fine quality, fitted to my head, any time
I wanted to replace the one I have.

Yes, a $12.50 hat was expensive in those days, but at
least they were plentiful. Same reason vintage cars
are so carefully cleaned and waxed. Artifacts of a
civilization that no longer exists. We preserve the
few we have and struggle to emulate a culture we
piece together from the available clues.

I do, however, go out with an imperfect hat. Just returned
from the dog park wearing a dirty beater Resistol 100...

Fletch
12-08-2006, 11:46 AM
The only part of my hats that has to stay just so is the brim - truthfully, the sides and back bother me more than the front! If I get the "wave" visible from the side, it drives me nuts. Same if it's bent too high on one side in the back - you can see that from the front.

Art Fawcett
12-08-2006, 11:46 AM
Not me Dutchman, I wear the hats till they fall apart and don't fuss much with mine. Admitedly, I have an advantage, but I only fuss when it's something important, like a wedding or funeral, or Friday night. Wait...I haven't had a friday night in years.;)
Throughout history, ( with notable exceptions of the Beau Brummell era, knights of the round table, etc) hats have been only head warming accesories and treated as such. To me, the worn rumpled look adds character and implies that you have a more casual attitude. Of course, I'm working to become one of those "characters" you read about..you know..grumbling old fart in the crumpled hat and 3 day beard burying his change in the back yard?

Feraud
12-08-2006, 03:42 PM
Nor am I fussy about my hat. When I buy new I bash it once and leave it alone. I might fix it a bit if the hat is soaked in a rainstorm but that is all.
The vintage hats I have purchased are worn "as is". No steaming and tweaking in front of a mirrow for me.
Hats are for wearing not fussing with!

WEEGEE
12-08-2006, 03:52 PM
Art Fawcett
Of course, I'm working to become one of those "characters" you read about..you know..grumbling old fart in the crumpled hat and 3 day beard burying his change in the back yard?



If you take payment in change why have i been dragging those heavy

bags to the bank? lol (as they say a penny saved is the first step to a new hat)

nulty
12-08-2006, 04:29 PM
I'm with Art..My goal is to be like one of the guys I used to see in college that wore old beat up hats and sat out in front of the bank on main street ogling all the coeds.....( my mum always said I'd amount to something)....

I agree too with the OP premise...I used to get carried aways with how the hat had to look....to a distraction really...Now the hat goes on my head the way I pluck it off the rack.....with maybe just a quick little pinch and I'm out the door..

jb

ideaguy
12-08-2006, 04:59 PM
Now this is a fun one! After searching for a hat that has this ribbon, and that impression on the sweatband, brim width just so, etc., etc. and paying a ransom or worse yet- getting a real deal, making it more precious-do we give it a quick
pinch,swoop the brim and dash? hmmmm not me, I'm too darn vain. Gotta be just so, and are my glasses clean and sparkling, and does this go with that, and vanity thy name is man... my Karen gets weary watching me assess my waning assets in front of a mirror that won't answer my question.
Nah, I think back in the day men were more preoccupied with making a dollar to
feed the family than to get agita over how dashing they looked. They all looked cool because of the lack of prima-donna, ain't I smashing attitude; the hat was simply part of the uniform, and not this crown we now bear upon manicured brow. loss of identity? mebbe so... what do you guys think?

Slicksuit
12-08-2006, 06:19 PM
They all looked cool because of the lack of prima-donna, ain't I smashing attitude; the hat was simply part of the uniform, and not this crown we now bear upon manicured brow. loss of identity? mebbe so... what do you guys think?
I agree...a lived in hat is a touch of character. As long as it doesn't look like the car ran over it, I think that a little asymmetry is cool.

jamespowers
12-08-2006, 06:23 PM
I agree...a lived in hat is a touch of character. As long as it doesn't look like the car ran over it, I think that a little asymmetry is cool.

When the car runs over it, it is known as a porkpie. :p
I didn't have time to finish my post earlier but what Art said just about covers it. I am already to the point that my wife's friends don't recognise me without a hat---any hat.

Regards,

J

WEEGEE
12-08-2006, 07:15 PM
I agree that we can treat our own hats any way we see fit. Some of my hats

are intended for many things (casual and dress). The realization is i wear

them to work and never know what that brings indoors, outdoors, weather as

it be,walking and running and sometime climbing trees. So, what will be will

be the hat protects the man and becomes what his life intends it to be.


Though i treat anothers hat like its a small baby.

undertaker
12-08-2006, 07:29 PM
You know, I would think that we today are probably FAR more concerned with our hats than people were in the '30's-'50's. We have to have our creases just so, our pinches just right, our brims must be cocked in just a certain way....

I don't know about you, but I couldn't stand going out with an imperfect hat!!!:eek:

I must agree, but then my wife sayes I have some OCD and from time to time calls me anal retentive. I disagree I am not hard to please, I just want it to be perfect:) .

Regards,
J.S.

Mr. Lucky
12-08-2006, 07:34 PM
Well, I ain't no dandy when it comes to the headwear and my ensemb! Recently I attended a rather casual event and dressed as I usually do - tweed blazer, denim painter pants, collared shirt, vintage tie and beat up Open Road. A friend of mine looked me over and said "So, how's that dustbowl?" And he was right. I wear khakis or carpenter jeans, plain shirts, shawl collar sweaters or woolrich vests, blazers --- simple, blue collar. And almost all my hats have something wrong with them - a tear here, a moth hole there, the occassional unknown 'soiling'. But that's how I've always dressed. Nope, no reat pleat and perfect lid for me, thank you very much.

Sefton
12-08-2006, 07:35 PM
I treat my hats very carefully...at first. After about 2 weeks the honeymoon's over and it becomes just a part of the wardrobe (a beautiful essential part of the wardrobe,that is!). Which reminds me;can anyone recommend a good hat brush? I notice that they are usually made from horse hair just like a good shoe shine brush. Any reason I couldn't buy a new shoe brush and use that on my hats?

WEEGEE
12-08-2006, 07:47 PM
A Kiwi shoe brush is great. On this stick with the brand name Kiwi.

The better thing with a hat brush over the Kiwi choice is the shape of the brush and longer handle.


http://www.serve.com/rbriggs/couriers/6-96/brushes.html

canucklehead
12-08-2006, 11:08 PM
A Kiwi shoe brush is great. On this stick with the brand name Kiwi.

Hmm. Here I go to post something about how I'm still too new to hat wearing to do anything but take good care of my hat and make sure it looks A-1 every time I leave the house with it on my head, and I end up learning a very valuable piece of information. Around here, you can count the places to BUY a hat on the fingers of a blind butcher's hand and have room to spare; I think it'd be even harder to find an actual hat brush.

*adds kiwi brush to shopping list*

Thanks, Weegee!

-Mike

aliados
12-09-2006, 06:48 AM
I think it'd be even harder to find an actual hat brush.
. . . -Mike
Actually not. The crown brush is soft and long-bristled (excellent for soft hats), and the brim brush, with shorter, stiffer bristles, is similar to a clothing brush (which used ot be available most everywhere; maybe they still are) or shoe brush.

http://wardrobesupplies.com/store/m2_mjsupp.html

As to the main topic here, I tend to wear my hats as I do my shoes. As long as they go with the outfit and the weather, I simply wear them. Just as I don't have my shoes re-heeled,re-laced, re-soled and spit-shined until it becomes apparent that such is necessary, I don't fuss with my hats once I've decided on the bash. And that is often dictated by the shape it's in when I got it (except with Open Roads -- I simply cannot bring myself to wear those with that cattleman's bash)!

Charlie

Feraud
12-09-2006, 07:21 AM
Do a Yahoo search for hat brushes if you do not have a local hat shop to visit.
Here are some I found in a quick search..
http://www.mens-hats.com/IBS/SimpleCat/product/ASP/hierarchy/0F/product-id/492246.html

http://www.shopzilla.com/8B--Men_s_Hats_-_cat_id--10120500__keyword--hat%20brush__kw--hat%2Bbrush__mkt_id--72457991__qcid--60450491295

http://www.sheplers.com/item.cfm?DI=101382&Source=PTech

etc, etc...
They are an inexpensive and useful item.

WEEGEE
12-09-2006, 07:40 AM
canucklehead,


A hat brush is certainly a good purchase. The availability of the Kiwi was

the key reason for recommendation. I still use the Kiwi and also a hat brush.

I keep the Kiwi in a zip lock bag in th car glove box and also do the same in

my travel toiletry bag. (the reason for sticking with the name brand are most non branded ones i have seen the hair tends to fall out of the brush...not so with the Kiwi)

Fatdutchman
12-09-2006, 12:51 PM
See, I am good for something! Isn't this a fun thread?

I bought a hat brush from Noggintops. They had a deal of the brush and a hat stretcher, so I saved a few dollars.

Hat availability and cost are obviously factors today. 50-70 years ago, you could go to any department store and pick up a decent hat for probably not too awful much money. Why worry so much about something so mundane and inexpensive? Now you have to search long and hard for a hatter to make you a hat, and you can spend a hundred bucks and much more for one these days!

undertaker
12-09-2006, 12:59 PM
I was able to find my hat brushes at a local western store, along with the stretchers, felt cleaners and stiffeners. The prices were comperable to those on the net and I didn't have to pay shipping and wait for days, I am not good at waiting:) .

Regards,
J.S.

44forrest
12-13-2006, 09:43 AM
Any reason I couldn't buy a new shoe brush and use that on my hats?

That's all I use, got it as a secret santa gift at work. It works great.
I am more fussy about my boots being shined and my vest being clean than I am about my hat. I still wear my first new purchase Stetson cowboy hat that I bought in 77 and it has never been professionally cleaned reshaped. The most I have ever done to it is brush it. I might reshape a vintage hat but once it's shaped, all it ever gets is a brushing. My house is heated with wood and the dust is considerable, and I also have a dog that sheds like mad, and the hats hang on pegs in the entryway of the house. So they need a brusing once a month or so. For six years my everyday hat had a hole in the crown at the peak of the pinch you could stick you index finger through. I looked like Jed Clampet and loved the look. But I was a young long haired redneck then. Now I workd with Judges and lawyers all day and a hat with a big hole wouldn't be propper. So guess I have matured a little. But like I said, my boots are always clean and shined.

GentlemanFarmer
12-13-2006, 09:57 AM
I also agree with Art. I'm shooting for "you Old Coot !!!". Picture Walter Brennan in those old John Wayne movies, except I really do plan on keeping my teeth.

Give me a pair of broken-in Wranglers, collared twill shirt, a comfortable pair of Justin Ropers and my Open Road and I'm set. If I want to dress up, I'll make sure they're starched so they can stand on their own. I'll still keep the dark suit for weddings/funerals and add my "good" OR for stylin'.

Dixon Cannon
12-13-2006, 10:46 AM
I'm not crazy about making it perfect. Mine are soft and pliable and the bash changes throughout the day, it seems. I've seen some 'perfect hats' while out and about and the look like props, not headgear. I think there is comfort and realism to an 'imperfect' lid. It makes it look like you've been wearing it regularly for years and it's standard gear - instead of a costume piece.

-dixon cannon

jkingrph
12-13-2006, 12:14 PM
I found a cheap horsehair bench brush at Tractor Supply, and bought several. One I use only to brush off hats.

Fatdutchman
12-13-2006, 01:27 PM
Any decent horsehair brush would work fine, I would imagine. An actual "hat brush" just has a convenient handle, that's all. A shoe brush would probably serve equally well...just don't get it confused with the one you actually use on your shoes!!!

scotrace
12-13-2006, 01:54 PM
Hat brushes are pretty easy to find. Check David Morgan if nothing else comes to hand.

In CA on the Queen Mary, I admit I wanted to grab all those perfect hats and mash them a bit.
But making the point wasn't worth a deserved busted jaw!

I like them rumpled, fussed with, soft and lived in.

I like m'hats that way too! ;)