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shamus
08-06-2005, 10:10 PM
I have about 10 hats or so but only 2 hat boxes... What's the best way to store them?

Can I buy new hat boxes?

Should I just make some?

What's the best material to store hats? I'm thinking cedar to keep any critters away...

Should I store them with the brim rolled up or as I wear them?

what's everyone doing on this topic?

Johnnysan
08-07-2005, 09:49 AM
Shamus...

You could probably order a few hat boxes from a number of places. I get mine from Levine Hat Company (http://www.levinehat.com/) in St. Louis. Nothing fancy, just nice heavy cardboard hat boxes that keep the lids from getting beat up and dusty. You can probably email them to see if they can ship you a few.

jamespowers
08-09-2005, 05:04 PM
In a bind, you could use those plastic shopping bags. One inside the other.
I don't mind moth balls so that is what all of mine get in their boxes. Works well too.
I store them as I wear them as long as there is room in the box. The darned Stratoliner boxes really can do a number on the hats but they do drop back into shape fairly easily. The white boxes are fine for storing hats as well. They are a little larger than the original boxes but they do the job. I search for original boxes wherever I can find them. People who have no idea about hats separate hats and boxes all the time. I can always find more boxes than hats for some reason. ;)

Regards to all,

J

Wild Root
08-09-2005, 06:54 PM
I have original hat boxes from the 30's, 40's and early 50's. I keep most of my hats in them. The ones I use a lot are hanging in my closet on nails I put in the wall. They hang nicely and they look good (the hats that is) I don't really get to much dust in the closet that I can see. But, when they get dusty I just pull out the vacuum cleaner and suck it all off. This isn't bad for hats at all. Just takes a little time.

Moth balls are a life saver! Some here don't care for the smell but I've grown to love the smell because I know the little beasties hate it! And it also makes my closet smell real vintage!

Root.

scotrace
08-09-2005, 07:06 PM
Here you are, (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=8324685949&ssPageName=ADME:B:SS:US:1), Shamus.


Might be too nice for a ballcap. Maybe use it for that Royal Jeweled Crown or something.

Wild Root
08-09-2005, 07:12 PM
Looks like the hat comes with it? That price is kind of on the high side but, when do you ever see original Akubra's from the 30's?

Root.

shamus
08-09-2005, 08:08 PM
hmmm one box for 250... or the trashbag for a penny

Feraud
08-09-2005, 08:33 PM
I bought some lightweight hatboxes from the Container Store (http://www.containerstore.com/browse/Product.jhtml?PRODID=62648&CATID=163&searchId=1014375&itemIndex=1). It is worth $4-5 bucks for me to store 'em this way. I also add moth balls to each box to keep the bugs out. I like the smell too. ;)

nicolasb
08-10-2005, 01:32 AM
I've been told that it's better to store (cheap) snap-brim hats with the brim up, as this helps it to keep its shape - can anyone confirm or deny that this is a good idea?

dlgilbert
08-10-2005, 02:50 AM
The best hat storage boxes I've seen, bar none, have been the ones I've gotten when I've ordered hats from Noggintops. They're sort of a hat cradling box with a hole for the crown so you can store them upside down and securely. I don't know where they get them or if they're custom made, though. Might be worth asking Doug where he gets them. :-)

scotrace
08-10-2005, 04:57 AM
Root, the hat is listed in another auction. That's the box only.

Feraud
08-10-2005, 05:57 AM
I've been told that it's better to store (cheap) snap-brim hats with the brim up, as this helps it to keep its shape - can anyone confirm or deny that this is a good idea?
I believe this is good advice for all hats. I keep my hats upside down(brim up) in their hat boxes.

Pen Collector
08-10-2005, 07:04 AM
has nice hat boxes for $20.00.

nicolasb
08-10-2005, 08:16 AM
I believe this is good advice for all hats. I keep my hats upside down(brim up) in their hat boxes.I didn't just mean the hat should be stored upside down (although you're right, it should) I meant I was told that it should be stored with the brim curled towards the top of the crown rather than curled down at the front and up at the back (as it normally would be when you're wearing the hat).

K.D. Lightner
08-10-2005, 08:34 AM
Thanks for all the tips, guys. It is timely to me right now as I am packing to go back to Iowa and be with my sainted mother for a spell. I have to make the agonizing decision: what hats do I store, which ones go with me?

I decided my best hats/caps, and the ones I wear the most, go with me, the rest can be stored until I get back to California, whenever that is.

Do mothballs smell better than they used to? I have cedar blocks and can get cedar strips. I just remember mothballs from my younger days and they smelled weird.

karol

feltfan
08-10-2005, 08:53 AM
I'm no moth ball fan.

But if I'm not mistaken, cedar has been completely
debunked. Apparently studies show it doesn't work
at all.

There are pheremone traps that work okay, but not
for long periods.

JeffW
08-10-2005, 08:56 AM
I keep my felt hats in a closet that is lined with eastern red cedar. Does anyone know if the will help in keeping pest away from my hats?

jamespowers
08-10-2005, 09:42 AM
Do mothballs smell better than they used to? I have cedar blocks and can get cedar strips. I just remember mothballs from my younger days and they smelled weird.

They smell the same to me. You get used to it after a while and I guess I am one of the few who don't mind the smell a bit.
The problem with cedar is that it is fine as long as the smell remains constant. It usually doesn't and requires sanding or shaving to revive the smell. I just throw in the moth balls and replace them when the disappear. You know for sure that they are working and when to replace them for full effectiveness. I understand they come in different scents now so you can check that out if they still smell the same to you. ;)

Regards to all,

J

K.D. Lightner
08-10-2005, 10:43 AM
Well, good, maybe they have some nice scents now. Maybe one that smells like cedar...

Thanks.

karol

JeffW
08-10-2005, 11:52 AM
Well, good, maybe they have some nice scents now. Maybe one that smells like cedar...

Thanks.

karol

I found this which may be a cool thing.

http://pekoproducts.com/moth.htm#Cedar

Thanks

jamespowers
08-10-2005, 12:47 PM
That one looks too expensive. Moth balls are $1 a box over here. I can live with plain old mothballs as many as I use anyway. ;)

regards to all,

J

K.D. Lightner
08-10-2005, 01:37 PM
JeffW: Thanks, I will check those cedar mothballs out. I love the smell of cedar and lemon cedar sounds nice, too.

karol

MattC
08-10-2005, 03:10 PM
You can get cedar chips in a cloth bag, and put the chips in the box (you can put the whole bag in, but I think its more economical to spread the chips). James is right that the smell fades, and you have to replace the chips when it does. I'm not so crazy about the smell of moth balls, so I use the chips. You can get 'em here
http://www.containerstore.com/browse/Product.jhtml?PRODID=59853&CATID=72585&searchId=1021871&itemIndex=1

shamus
08-10-2005, 04:28 PM
you can also get cedar chips at any pet place as they call it bedding for hamsters...

I've got an idea on a closet system to store hats I'm going to make.. I'll up date everyone when I get started on it.

Aquia33
08-10-2005, 05:06 PM
I've been told that it's better to store (cheap) snap-brim hats with the brim up, as this helps it to keep its shape - can anyone confirm or deny that this is a good idea?

Here is a link to hat care on the Worth & Worth site.
http://www.hatshop.com/hatcare.html
Brim up for all hats especially good ones

Aquia33
08-10-2005, 05:18 PM
you can also get cedar chips at any pet place as they call it bedding for hamsters...

I've got an idea on a closet system to store hats I'm going to make.. I'll up date everyone when I get started on it.

I took a 7'X10' corner of my basement and put in a full-lined (walls/floors/ceiling) tongue & groove cedar closet. I sealed it with plastic sheeting (left from the bio-attack frenzie we went thru), covered that with 7/16 plywood, then the 5/16 T&G cedar. It is pretty air tight and always cool & dry.

Johnnysan
08-10-2005, 05:28 PM
I took a 7'X10' corner of my basement and put in a full-lined (walls/floors/ceiling) tongue & groove cedar closet. I sealed it with plastic sheeting (left from the bio-attack frenzie we went thru), covered that with 7/16 plywood, then the 5/16 T&G cedar. It is pretty air tight and always cool & dry.

Wow...this sounds really nice. Any photos?

Doc Glockster
08-06-2013, 12:25 PM
I know we've all been told over the years to never store a hat resting on its brim, but I've got a couple of questions.

I like the "Clint Eastwood" type cowboy hat predominantly, like the one he wore in "Hang 'Em High". It's a hat with a flat brim.

Well, I have several hats like that, but when I store them in the box "crown down" with a hat stretcher in place, I notice the brim doesn't stay flat. It starts to curve like an Akubra's or something.

Granted, I wear a 7 1/4 sized hat which fits my dome tightly, and therefore when I store the hat with the stretcher in place I give it a couple of extra cranks to keep it a little loose on my head for when my hair grows out a little.

Would it hurt to store the hat on its brim knowing that I want the brim flat?

I know that giving the hat stretcher an extra turn or two is causing the brim to distort just slightly in storage, but this also ensures that it fits the next time I put it on. I'm looking for a way to keep the hat nice and comfortable in fit while maintaining that perfectly flat brim I like.

Bruce Wayne
08-06-2013, 12:40 PM
I store my hats brim down. I tried storing them brim up & I created a flat spots on the crown.

gtdean48
08-06-2013, 12:41 PM
Western hats with a shaped brim, slight pull down in front & back with sides curled up, are the reason for "set it on the crown" instructions.
Resting on the brim flattened out this brim shaping. Fedoras & flat brim or up turned brims (Open Road) can & should be stored on the brim, not the crowns. Turning a hat-jack stretcher will distort the brim when it goes the original blocking. I hang my hats on a hat rack when leaving a hat jack or band block in them, careful that the weight doesn't cause the hanger to dent the crown.
If you don't have the shaped brim to worry about, by all means store it setting on the brim....

Mulceber
08-06-2013, 01:26 PM
No one says it better than Matt Deckard


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZC8RUGuKjQg

Joao Encarnado
08-06-2013, 02:18 PM
I own only one western with a flat brim. It's the only one I store brim down and it is still flat.

alhartman
08-14-2013, 10:21 AM
I am too new to hats to weight in on storing brim up/down but can pass on warnings about the material of the container itself.
I am a long term collector of Scouts on Stamps; most older material from 1910s to 1950s lived in cardboard boxes or on stamp album pages. Paper making process leaves acid molecules which get loose over time and migrate to the paper based stamps and envelopes; hence the often added auction term 'some foxing at the edges'. I get all of my stamp storage items from archival services that make with acid free paper/cardboard.
I'd speculate that wool/fur doesn't like acid either and would recommend not storing valuable hats over the long term in anything that might impart acid molecules to the fur. JMO but have seen many beautiful items deteriorated from incompatibility of storage materials with the item being stored.
From stamp experience I would put a valuable hat in a neutral plastic bag before putting in a hatbox--and would air the hat and change the plastic every year or so. Plastic covers over mint stamps have also ruined the stamp so I think plastic long term is not good and have no opinion on mothballs ( napthalene).
Maybe we have a museum curator on this site that can weigh in more accurately. ............al

TheDane
08-14-2013, 01:51 PM
I am too new to hats to weight in on storing brim up/down but can pass on warnings about the material of the container itself.

Hatters like Art Fawcett and John Penman use acid free boxes, but they cost around $50 in wholesale. It is nevertheless a good investment for long term storing. They are probably often seen as luxury boxes, but the truth is, they are the only ones suited for archival storing

Just as bad are cabinets and drawers made from ordinary chipboard and plywood. They are known to evaporate a lot of different chemical compounds, including formaldehyde. Today, museum storage cabinets must be made from certified materials, guaranteed to be suited for archival purposes. You still see them made from plywood, but then the plywood is specially fabricated for the purpose.

If you buy vintage grosgrain ribbon, you sometimes see 'fading', that is obviously not only due to (sun)light. The ribbon can have a more or less distinct shift in hue in many of the outer layers on the spool/bolt. Often you see such a colorshift in up to an inch thickness - many layers, never struck by light. A reasonable explanation could be some chemical effect from the environment, affecting to a certain depth of the material.

Worf
08-14-2013, 03:42 PM
Any advice for storing straw hats? Natural and composite fiber straw hats. Believe it or not it's getting cool here already and I'd like to get more'n one season out of my straw hats.

Worf

The Wiser Hatter
08-14-2013, 03:51 PM
I use uline hat boxes. They are cheap and are acid free.
http://www.uline.com/BL_5614/Hat-Wreath-Boxes

TheDane
08-14-2013, 04:16 PM
They are probably often seen as luxury boxes, but the truth is, they are the only ones suited for archival storing

Well Ed ... pretty luxury after all, I guess. Never believe a man talking about THE truth! I truely stand corrected on that part ;)

The Wiser Hatter
08-14-2013, 05:32 PM
I have large closets full of boxes. Each has a picture of me wearing the hat on the outside of the box. I have a hanging zipper bag for my favorite hats for each season.
Downstairs I have a closet just for all my caps.

hatsRme
08-15-2013, 05:14 AM
I use uline hat boxes. They are cheap and are acid free.
http://www.uline.com/BL_5614/Hat-Wreath-Boxes

Trust, yet verify... Where do they specify the boxes to be acid free, Ed? It was not on the page linked, but I assume it's mentioned somewhere in their nomenclature.

viclip
08-15-2013, 05:23 AM
Trust, yet verify... Where do they specify the boxes to be acid free, Ed? It was not on the page linked, but I assume it's mentioned somewhere in their nomenclature.

And now I'm all interested in picking up a load of the 16" square boxes of 7" height. I find it hard to locate boxes with that height, which is ideal for use in my shelving units (15" spacing between the shelves so I could double up the boxes).

T Jones
08-15-2013, 05:29 AM
Regarding the moth balls...I like the smell of moth balls too but I wouldn't want my hats to smell that way, especially when I'm wearing them in public where everyone could smell it....so wouldn't the hats pick up that moth ball smell too?

JonnyO
08-15-2013, 05:30 AM
Believe it or not it's getting cool here already
You aren't kidding, I think we skipped a month of summer this year.

gtdean48
08-15-2013, 06:00 AM
Regarding the moth balls...I like the smell of moth balls too but I wouldn't want my hats to smell that way, especially when I'm wearing them in public where everyone could smell it....so wouldn't the hats pick up that moth ball smell too?

The reason I use cedar balls instead of moth balls...

viclip
08-16-2013, 07:54 AM
Trust, yet verify... Where do they specify the boxes to be acid free, Ed? It was not on the page linked, but I assume it's mentioned somewhere in their nomenclature.
Being in hat storage crisis mode, I contacted uline's Canadian branch as to whether their hat boxes as well as their corrugated boxes, were acid free. Herewith their response:

<
Thank you for contacting Uline Customer Service.

The S-7960 - 16 x 16 x 7" Two-Piece White Hat/Wreath Boxes and the S-16747 - 15 x 15 x 7" Corrugated Boxes are not acid free. Please see the links below to some of our acid free boxes we carry.

Acid Free
http://www.uline.com/Product/AdvSearchResult.aspx?keywords=acid%20free

>

The link to their acid-free boxes didn't disclose anything that would be useful for my hats.
So now I'm on the hunt for acid-free hat boxes...does anyone know of a verified source?

TheDane
08-16-2013, 09:17 AM
As I understand it, Art and Penman buy their at Sarah's Hat Boxes (http://www.sarahshatboxes.com/). There are also some from Hollinger (http://www.hollingermetaledge.com/modules/store/index.html?dept=1&cat=1112) - and University Products (http://www.universityproducts.com/cart.php?m=product_list&c=928&primary=1&parentId=1266&navTree[]=1266&navTree[]=1460&navTree[]=928) - and The Container Store (http://www.containerstore.com/shop/closet/clothingCare/archival?productId=10000208) - and The Empty Container Company (http://www.emptybox.co.uk/products/) - and The Family Archives (http://www.familyarchives.com/products/Artifact-%252d-Large.html) - and you can probably find more via Google. You may have to make a hat ring from acid free cardboard for some of the 'cheaper' boxes, though

The Wiser Hatter
08-16-2013, 09:33 AM
Should add that I use a plastic hat stand inside the box.
http://www.thehatco.com/media/accessories/Hat_Stands_Doz_DP_MI.jpg
plastic-hat-stand (http://cowboykicks.com/mf-western-plastic-hat-stand-136501)
keeps the brim and crown nice between wearings.

TheDane
08-16-2013, 09:39 AM
Ed, if acid free and chemical reactions are not of any interest - or for shorter periods of time - they are fine, but if I have paid a lot of money for an acid free hat box, I would not use a plastic stand in it.

wine65
08-16-2013, 09:18 PM
Does anyone know if the Optimo boxes are acid free?

The Wiser Hatter
08-17-2013, 02:39 AM
Ed, if acid free and chemical reactions are not of any interest - or for shorter periods of time - they are fine, but if I have paid a lot of money for an acid free hat box, I would not use a plastic stand in it.

You use the stand to keep your hat brim and crown from getting bent either in a box or on a shelf.
The original Hat boxes for Stetson, Mallory and to this day hat manufacturers do not worry about acid free.
I worry more about temperature and moth's.

T Jones
08-17-2013, 04:23 AM
You use the stand to keep your hat brim and crown from getting bent either in a box or on a shelf.
The original Hat boxes for Stetson, Mallory and to this day hat manufacturers do not worry about acid free.
I worry more about temperature and moth's.What would be a good temperature for storage? I keep my hats in my room away from heat and sunlight. Do I need to do more?

mayserwegener
08-17-2013, 05:00 AM
I buy my boxes from Capas.

http://www.capasheadwear.com/

They sell low cost hat store boxes but there is a quantity limit (30?). They come with hat inserts. My guess is they are not acid free which doesn't matter to me.

I can also get Mayser hat boxes but there is a 50 quantity limit (probably about $7.00 a piece) although only 5.7 inches in height. Also their classic box which doesn't have a quantity limit (probably about $45.00 a piece).

http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5505/9528018405_0df95f72e2_b.jpg

I have a few of the classic ones which are really nice.

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2560/3687677208_9568c37d98.jpg

The Wiser Hatter
08-17-2013, 08:35 AM
What would be a good temperature for storage? I keep my hats in my room away from heat and sunlight. Do I need to do more?
Like most things its the extreme temperatures that to me would cause problems Anything over 90 degrees and below freezing for long periods of time is what I am concerted with. That's why I use a closet. I am lucky in that my office has two large closet's. Previous owner was a woman who loved clothes so every bedroom has two of them upstairs.:)

TheDane
08-17-2013, 09:11 AM
The original Hat boxes for Stetson, Mallory and to this day hat manufacturers do not worry about acid free.
The problems about storing materials started in the late 50's and 60's - Stetson, Mallory and others indeed made acid free hat boxes, just as everyone else did back in the day. They didn't know how to make boxes in any other way.

It's probably true, that today's manufacturers don't care about acid free hat boxes. They don't care much about hats in the first place, which is why most of us buy vintage on EBay. Furthermore most contemporary manufacurers of anything consider 'producing to last' as counter productive. What's good for you is not always good for the company [huh]

When we're able buy almost mint hats from the 1920's, 30's and 40's, it's very much due to careful storing in a neutral environments. If our parents and grandparents had had cabinets, drawers and boxes, made from the materials that we have today, we would not have all those beautiful old hats to choose from. Many of them would not still be in mint condition.

Technology, new materials and knowledge about these have given us a responsibility our ancestors didn't have. If we care about our children and grandchildren and their future number of artifacts of historical interest, we should care about how we handle and store these artifacts. It depends on whether we see ourselves as preservators of the cultural historical artifacts we buy - or not :)

mayserwegener
08-17-2013, 09:46 AM
How do you know that old hat boxes were acid free? In some cases I have seen yellowing of old hat boxes. I am going to check if the Capas and Mayser boxes are acid free.

TheDane
08-17-2013, 10:07 AM
How do you know that old hat boxes were acid free?
Because the problematic glues didn't exist, then. They were invented up through the 50's and 60's as a result of the scientific reserch, boosted by WWII. Modern plywood and chipwood is also made with these glues - and furniture made from such materials are not suited for archival storing and can not be used by museums.

Back in the 20's, 30's and 40's cabinetmakers also made furniture from glued together 'block board' - a lot of long 1/4" wooden battens, glued side by side between two rather thick (around 1/8") veneers. Boards like that was glued with hot glue, made from animal hides - almost neutral in acidity and free from chemestry. Today cardboard, plywood and chipwood is treated with a multitude of chemical substanses and glued with PVA and other glues, that are acidous and ooze off harmful gases

The Wiser Hatter
08-17-2013, 10:23 AM
I have seen many hats that where not stored properly. Because no one really cared. They just put them in a box and stashed them away. No thought at all was given to the storage of a hat. It was not of any importance to the original owner at all. Its a miracle that the vintage hats we buy and wear get to us in good shape.

mayserwegener
08-17-2013, 11:04 AM
Because the problematic glues didn't exist, then. They were invented up through the 50's and 60's as a result of the scientific reserch, boosted by WWII. Modern plywood and chipwood is also made with these glues - and furniture made from such materials are not suited for archival storing and can not be used by museums.

Back in the 20's, 30's and 40's cabinetmakers also made furniture from glued together 'block board' - a lot of long 1/4" wooden battens, glued side by side between two rather thick (around 1/8") veneers. Boards like that was glued with hot glue, made from animal hides - almost neutral in acidity and free from chemestry. Today cardboard, plywood and chipwood is treated with a multitude of chemical substanses and glued with PVA and other glues, that are acidous and ooze off harmful gases

What about paper hat boxes? I have seen discoloring and breakdown of old paper hat boxes.

Here is a article I found with some interesting information regarding acid free and the lack of lignin removal.

http://www.centuryboxes.com/features.php

I have seen some felt discoloration (lighter colors) in some hats stored in original boxes (NOS). I am not sure if this was from the boxes or a by product of the felting process. Felt damage is usually due to moths or some other insect. Storage temp and humidity being a big factor regarding sweatbands.

TheDane
08-17-2013, 11:25 AM
Ed, I totally agree - it's a wonder, many are so well preserved. If the hat was put away in an old box back in the 50's or 60's, it's not that big a wonder, though. A felthat can easily live for many decades in a box from the 40's. Hats stored in a modern box today will most surely not be in mint condition in 50-70 years from now. Storing and chemistry in the environtment is probably the biggest problem for museums today. The issue is of gigantic proportions, as it seems to undermine the finances of museums all over the world.

My dad worked as a wood preservator on The Royal Danish Army Museum, and I remember how all at the museum panicked, when the government introduced a new law back in the late 60's (I think it was). If a fisherman got a canon or other historic artefact in his net, he was no longer allowed to let it glide back into the sea. He was obliged to take it ashore and contact a museum.

The intentions were really good, but the law resulted in a big loss of canons and other priceless artefacts. As long as a canon is under seawater, it can last for many many centuries. As soon as it gets up in the air, the corrosion and degeneration of the metal will destroy it in a week or three. It has to be 'drowned' in alcohol or clean salty water immediately as it reaches the atmosphere to survive.

A hat can survive many generations, when stored in a suitable environment. When replaced into an unhealthy environment, it can degrade seriously within few years.


What about paper hat boxes? I have seen discoloring and breakdown of old paper hat boxes.
Old paper and cardboard from before the late 50's is most likely acid free. What is the source of the discoloration is hard to say, but it does not necessarily have anything to do with acid or degrading chemistry

mayserwegener
08-17-2013, 11:41 AM
>>
Old paper and cardboard from before the late 50's is most likely acid free. What is the source of the discoloration is hard to say, but it does not necessarily have anything to do with acid or degrading chemistry
>>

Did you read the article I posted regarding the lignin factor?

The Wiser Hatter
08-17-2013, 11:52 AM
Good article Steve.

TheDane
08-17-2013, 12:11 PM
Did you read the article I posted regarding the lignin factor?
Yes and still: The manufactoring processes at the time were completely different. The problems arose with the developement of the chemistry industry in the late 50's and the 60's.

In my first post on the issue, I wrote: "Today, museum storage cabinets must be made from certified materials, guaranteed to be suited for archival purposes.". The words 'certified' and 'guaranteed' are quite important for museums, but I agree that it's hard to get certfication of the materials, used for hat boxes [huh]

Another important thing to remember: Century Boxes is a supplier, praising own products and processes. There are other suppliers, making just as truly acid free products. It's a nieche, but the products are still sought, and the manufacturers are out there ;)

mayserwegener
08-18-2013, 08:11 AM
I would assume lignin is present so as it degrades it gives off acid.

I have been using the Capas boxes for a few years now I don't see any issues with the felt hats I have stored in them. I have no idea if there are acid free.