Advice for newcomer on custom hatters

Discussion in 'Hats' started by Lloyd, Dec 15, 2009.

  1. fmw

    fmw One Too Many

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    Location:
    USA
    I can't imagine why anybody cares what an actor wears.
     
  2. Dave Brown

    Dave Brown New in Town

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    henrietta new york
    I am referring to the outside band when I speak of leather hat bands in the western section. I dislike them because the bleed into the hat(most leather bands, I find, are water soluble)
    thanks for the question
    db
     
  3. Dave Brown

    Dave Brown New in Town

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    henrietta new york
    I agree , but it's agreat showcas for something I love to do :) and I have never met a costume designer that didn't try to stay in, and create the period in which movie was about .
    db
     
  4. Dave Brown

    Dave Brown New in Town

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    henrietta new york
    THANK YOU!!
    db
     
  5. Dave Brown

    Dave Brown New in Town

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    Location:
    henrietta new york
    GOOD MAN , STAY ON IT !! someone needs to
     
  6. Neophyte

    Neophyte My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    3,445
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    Thank you. I think I've read about the bleeding before, but it took your answer to remind me :).
     
  7. jlee562

    jlee562 My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    So Mr. Brown, I take it you plead the 5th?
     
  8. slumd

    slumd New in Town

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    Location:
    St. Louis
    Custom Hats

    Hatless Newby--wish to start with gray and brown, classic 2 5/8, Dana Andrews type look. Where to turn, seems like so many good options--Gary White, Art Fawcett, John Penman, Black Sheep, Optimo. Yikes! Any advice?
     
  9. barrowjh

    barrowjh One Too Many

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    1,398
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    Maryville Tennessee
    Browns and or grays are just about everyone's first choice. Ebay is full of greys and browns, and all the custom hatters can take care of your request. Problem is, you need to visit an honest-to-pete hat store so you can figure out which size, which style, etc. You don't know what to request, and without a pic of you, those hatters don't really know what to suggest to you. Quite a few of us are still looking for the 'perfect' hat, so how can we tell you what to do, when we haven't figured it out ourselves either. enjoy the journey; I'm still having fun.
     
  10. animator

    animator One of the Regulars

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    231
    Location:
    Seattle
    My first real fedora was by Art Fawcett and it was a great way to start. I really appreciated the quality and how perfectly the hat fit (he sends a conformer that measures the size and shape of your head).

    I think all the people you mentioned would make you a hat you could treasure.
     
  11. Lexybeast

    Lexybeast A-List Customer

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    342
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    Los Angeles, CA
    My first custom was a grey Art Fawcett. Still wear the heck out of it.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. DOGMAN

    DOGMAN One Too Many

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    1,502
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    Northeast Ohio
    My first custom came from Falcon Park Hattery.Very reasonably priced.I'm very happy with it[​IMG]
     
  13. My first custom fedora was by Buckaroo Hatters, the Field & Stream Tribute...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  14. Iyor

    Iyor One of the Regulars

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    200
    Location:
    NYC
    I've tried several hatters, but the only ones I've gone back to are Gary White, and John Walls (jwalls is his username). Both have been making hats for a very long time, Gary I think has been doing it for around 40 years. Another great thing with Gary, and John is that they offer hats made from vintage bodies, Gary even has some cavanagh edge bodies. I haven't tried optimo, but you can see their work in the optimo dedicated thread they're excellent.
     
  15. scottyrocks

    scottyrocks I'll Lock Up

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    Isle of Langerhan, NY
    If you are indeed both hatless and a newbie, I, too, strongly recommend visiting a hat store so you can see what various hats look like on and with your head and face. A Dana Andrews look [​IMG] may look great on Dana Andrews, but you want to see what looks good on you before laying out the bucks for a custom.
     
  16. Historyteach24

    Historyteach24 Call Me a Cab

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    Location:
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    I would be terrified for my first fedora to be a custom because you learn from mistakes. I have tried on multiple designs that I thought would look awesome but made me look funny. Case in point I always have loved the look of a porkpie but they look bad on my huge head. I would go to a hat store even if it is a cheap hat store and try on some wool hats if I had to just to see what styles looked good on me. I would say I bought/owned at least 12 different fedoras before I bought a custom and then I could make an informed decision and knew exactly what I wanted.
     
  17. Rabbit

    Rabbit Call Me a Cab

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    2,319
    Location:
    Live from Somewhere
    Going the custom route for your first fedora need not necessarily be a bad idea.
    You can provide the custom hatter of your choice with information about you, namely some good pictures (totals and portraits from different angles) and some basic measurements (body height, weight, chest and waist would be a comprehensive list, I guess) that give an idea of your built. That's what I did with my first custom hat from Art Fawcett.
    A good hatter will know which hat dimensions should work with your features and built.
    One important thing to consider is that every custom hatter has his own style (within limits, of course) - most notably, the ribbon bow details, the felt finishes, the stitchings, the materials used (ribbons, sweatbands, liners), and the felt colors offered differ from each other. That's a good thing; you can study these differences by going through the respective threads here and choose to your personal taste. What you should know is that the recommendations of different hatters (about the block to be used, the ribbon width and brim width) will differ from each other at least to some extent because of their personal styles.
    What I'm trying to say is that it pays to do your homework first. Since personal preferences differ so widely, and people's builds do likewise, it is difficult to make general recommendations.
    Another thing is that some custom hatters use a conformer, and others don't. Art ships a conformer to new customers and makes a band block according to the conformer settings when he gets it back. I'm not sure which of the other custom hatters offer this service.
    Hope this is helpful.

    For what it's worth, the custom hatter of my choice is Art. He is known mainly for his beaver felts made from Winchester hat bodies in both Winchester's standard colors and some other colors made for him. He also does Panamas and Milans.
    His style leans toward full, straight crowns (or crowns with only a little taper). His ribbon work is very distinctive, both the regular bows and the more elaborate ones (like sharks gill bows or box bows) are very well made, the materials in general are great quality.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
  18. Ditto.

    Get some vintage and production hats and start wearing them allot, then you will gain a MUCH better idea of what you like in a hat, at a MUCH lower investment.
     
  19. slumd

    slumd New in Town

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    3
    Location:
    St. Louis
    Maybe . . .

    . . . I shoulc try out a Stetson Temple first, then? Local hat shop currently out of sizes I'm close to; think I'd be around a 7 3/8, but trying on their straws (they mostly have summer hats in currently), different models/brands seem to fit differently. The thought of custom came up regarding the conformer approach; which should get the hat size correct, then I'll always know the correct size--but you all are right that, if it ends up looking funny on me, it will be an expensive mistake!
     
  20. slumd

    slumd New in Town

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    St. Louis
    Beautiful hats, Lexybeast and Dogman! What are the crown/brim width dimensions, if I may ask? Shadowhawk from Black Sheep is around what I think would look good in gray, Marlo from Penman in brown or gray, but it is difficult to tell without "trying it on." All of Art Fawcett's work is quite impressive, too!
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012

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