Decline of the Hat

Discussion in 'Hats' started by colleency, Jul 19, 2006.

  1. I’ve heard that too and it rings true. It was a time of change and rebirth. The old ways were falling and the world experienced change at an unbelievable rate. The aristocracy was in free fall and the working class were really empowered for the first time in history. In the past, dress, including hats, was a way to distinguish societal rank and most people showed a level of deference to those in a higher class. The cracks were apparent after WW1, but after WW2 the dam had burst. Now look at how conspicuous consumption is looked down on and billionaires dress in hoodies and jeans and interact with us little people. Unfortunately, a lot of babies were thrown out with the bath water.

    I tease my wife and blame it all on giving women the vote, she doesn’t laugh. :)


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  2. Rmccamey

    Rmccamey My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    My speculation would also include efficiency and greater mass production.
    Good hats take some care and consideration. Caps, on the other hand, can be wadded, folded, and thrown around with almost no adverse effects and they are cheap and plentiful and, as you have mentioned, don't mind sitting in car seats and floorboards for weeks on end. And they are cheap and disposable. Similar also are the mass produced western hats. It is easy these days to buy an entry level Stetson or Resistal or Sunbody for $39 or $49, use and abuse it for a few years, throw it away and start again...something I'm not going to do with a Gannon, VS , or even a mid level production Stetson or Dobbs. We've become too much of a disposable culture and good hats don't lend themselves to that. Good hats, I believe, are more personal...there is a sort of attachment and that gives them feelings, in a sense, that requires attention from owners and that takes more time and effort than most people want to spend. You said it yourself, you question whether to wear it 50 feet from the car to the office. At least you THINK about it, most people don't want to have to think at all and a hat would be "one more thing" to have to think about, so they don't. You're a good man, Charley Brown!

    Ps; we should start a national hat day if there isn't already one on the books
     
  3. belfastboy

    belfastboy I'll Lock Up

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    I think Friday was National Glazed Donut Day.....surely if there is room for that we can make room for a national hat day!
     
  4. Frunobulax

    Frunobulax

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    Y'all take your hats off in the car?

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  5. Rmccamey

    Rmccamey My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    Around town, no. Long drives, yes.

     
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  6. TheOldFashioned

    TheOldFashioned One Too Many

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    OK, good, I'm not the only who was wondering about this as well. I thought maybe I was missing something here and committing a major faux pas by wearing my hat in my car.
     
  7. scottyrocks

    scottyrocks I'll Lock Up

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    No.

    In fact, when I new car shop, I sit in the car in question with my hat on to be sure there is room for it.

    This is also one of the reasons why I generally don't buy cars with sunroofs - they eat up too much headroom. Except my MINI. Loads of headroom even with a fedora on.
     
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  8. I have to, because if I don't the crown hits the roof liner and/or the back of the brim hits the headrest. Those both annoy me when I'm driving, so it's easier to toss my hat(s) on the back seat.
     
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  9. Frunobulax

    Frunobulax

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    I wear my hat while driving slow in the fast lane with the turn signal on.

    Getting to be that age, y'know?

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  10. Preacher Man

    Preacher Man A-List Customer

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    I'm with scottyrocks on this; when I go car or truck trading I always wear my hat, the widest brim hat I own. If I can't get in the vehicle with it on, from either side, front and back, I move on to another vehicle. And yep, I wear my hat while driving; like Frunobulax, I do that too!! Lol!!!
     
  11. hatsandcanes

    hatsandcanes Familiar Face

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    My dad owned a Shoe repair and retail shoe store. He bought it from his uncle after returning from the Korean war. My great uncle worked on shoes, saddles and harness for horses but it was my dad who added the shoe store. I was 15 when he died and I was just too young to take over so my mom sold it. It was a huge business and he repaired and sold many shoes and boots. It closed in 2003 and was in business for 75 years. He was always proud of being a shoe cobbler but he also knew the writing on the wall. It was a dying trade. I can't even think of a place outside of 70 miles that still repair shoes. We just replace them with a new pair. It is really sad that a lot of the things from times past is fading out!
     
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  12. nvilletele

    nvilletele One of the Regulars

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    First, all headrests should be removed from cars so we can drive more comfortably with fedoras and not just caps any more.

    I can make do with normal height roofs though. I just lower the seat a bit. I am no giant, so no issue for me.

    Second, it occurs to me there may be a benefit to climate change (however minimal or illusory). Perhaps it will reverse the decline of the hat. I hate sunscreen, and maybe others do as well. I see the need for hats to soon become a health issue, if it isn’t there already.

    Ok, maybe not (for either). But I’ll keep on wearing.
     
  13. I wouldn't say I'm a giant, but I was 6'2" tall in my younger days; age and back surgery have reduced me to an even 6'. Ongoing back problems force me to sit upright in any vehicle I occupy, so head room/clearance is a regular issue for me, particularly in smaller vehicles.

    I also dislike sunscreen, so after having a bit of cancer carved off of my nose in 2013 I became even more adamant about wearing brimmed hats for sun protection. I can't imagine we're alone in that regard, but I'm not sure there are enough of us to reverse the decline in hat wearing purely for health reasons; I can't even convince my wife to wear one of my hats to keep her head dry when it's raining. o_O
     
  14. A property adjusted headrest is a real safety device and no brimmed hats work in conjunction with them. I’m not about to compromise safety so I can wear my hat when driving. My sartorial preferences are secondary to self preservation. Anyway, a hat is functional and I personally don’t need that function when driving. Just me.


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  15. scottyrocks

    scottyrocks I'll Lock Up

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    And just to be pedantic, that thing that stops your head from snapping off your neck in a rear-ender is actually called a 'head restraint' not a head rest.
     
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  16. Frunobulax

    Frunobulax

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    Must be the angle I keep my seat. I've never had an issue (shrugs).

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  17. Frunobulax

    Frunobulax

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    That sounds kinkier, at least.

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  18. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn I'll Lock Up

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    From the time I began wearing fedoras, ten years ago, I have been of the opinion that head rests put the nail in the coffin of hat-wearing. I can remember when whiplash began to be talked about, and my dad's friends still wore fedoras. Within just. a few years of whiplash becoming well known, all that had stopped. It's also why I began collecting flat caps. You can wear them anywhere and they don't take up space. I still love my fedoras and cowboy hats, but which head wear I choose when I got out depends on whether it's convenient to wear something with a brim or not .
     
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  19. humanshoes

    humanshoes One Too Many

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    Has it occurred to anyone else that the heightened awareness and popularity of men's hair styling may have also played a part? I grew up in the days of Brylcreem and Butchwax and was around for the advent of the "dry look" touted by many men's hair products of the time. No more greasy kid stuff. Eventually, expensive hair cuts, blow drying, styling, etc. all became common for men. It seems to me that, at some point, men just didn't want to mess up the "do" by wearing a hat that would result in the inevitable "hat hair".
     
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  20. Kane

    Kane One of the Regulars

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    I am at a downtown Santa Monica farmers market every week, and I do see a fair amount of hats. I don’t know how relevant Santa Monica is to a broader sense of style, but hats are not uncommon there. A lot of older people are out in Tilley type of hats (no doubt with an SPF rating) and a thick layer of white sun screen smeared over their faces and necks, but many people — young to old — are donning fedoras and the occasional western. My impression is that people there are becoming comfortable including a nice felt hat as part of their regular attire, and that the sense of a fedora being a poser’s costume or period piece is not there, that people are loosening up a bit about wearing a nice hat. It’s nice to see.
    Btw, isn’t today, Jan. 15, national hat day? Like talk like a Pirate day? Hmmm.
     
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