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Panama Hat Thread

Burma Shave

One of the Regulars
Messages
156
Location
Columbia SC
Interested in panama hats?

Check out this book: The Panama Hat Trail, by Tom Miller, published in 1988 by Vintage Departures, a division of Vintage Books.

Of course, some of the information included is outdated, since it's close to 2 decades old. However, the essentials -- how the hats are made, for example -- remain true.

Rather than try to summarize the book, I'll simply copy the back-cover text: "Tom Miller sets out on more than a journey -- he engages in a rare and extraordinary detective story. Panama hats, those fashionable head toppers with a style and mythology all their own, are America's most popular haberdashery. But where do they come from? When the answer in Ecuador, not Panama, the intrigue begins. Tracing these hats from the harvesting of jungle straw to their sale in California stores, Miller's quest brings him face to face with drug traffickers, zealous missionaries, Amazon prostitutes, and more than a few banana republics. All in all, an exceptionally entertaining adventure played out in a part of the world we rarely see."

It's good stuff. Only about one-third to one-half of the book is about the hats, including history, production and marketing. But the rest of the book is pretty interesting travelogue, so many people here on the Lounge will likely enjoy it.
 

Kaleponi Craig

A-List Customer
Messages
418
Location
Just North of San Francisco
stylin said:
Nah.. Prefer fur felt to Panama look....perhaps if i settle down in S. America.

Stylin, both are great hats. A fine Montecristi Panama is one of the greatest works of art in existence. The first time I held one in my hands, looked at the unbelievably fine weave and put it on my head, I knew I was in love...KC
 

astaire

One of the Regulars
couldn't agree more with KC

Actually, the reason i got into fedorae is because of panamas (panamae?) Whilst travelling in Athens, i stumbled to a hat shop that sells unfinished montechristis. when i finally touched one, tears almost fell from my eyes. I bought one in the optimo style (the one with the ridge running down the middle of the crown), and still haven't gotten around to send it to Mr. Fawcett to put on the sweat band and bow. I'll post some pices when i do.
 

Tony in Tarzana

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,276
Location
Baldwin Park California USA
I got my first fur felt fedora back in December, just in time for the coldest winter here in the San Fernando Valley that I can remember. In a few months, we'll be back to 100¬? + temperatures, and I may be on the lookout for a Panama.
 

Bud-n-Texas

Practically Family
Messages
975
Location
Central Texas (H.O.T.)
Ok fellas, lets show what ya got. All straws are welcome and appreciated.

These first two are my vintage straws, a Lee panama and a Adam milan.

P1000122.jpg


P1000124.jpg


I finished this body last year and it has served me well.

P1000113.jpg
 
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Bud-n-Texas

Practically Family
Messages
975
Location
Central Texas (H.O.T.)
Nice lid Aaron. I have been wearing Shantung westerns for decades. I picked up a Guatemalan palm 2 years ago, it is very durable, but quite a bit heavier than other straws that I have had.


I like the Boso Dean, looks coooooool
 

Zig2k143

Practically Family
Messages
507
Location
Drums, Pa
Bud-n-Texas said:
Nice lid Aaron. I have been wearing Shantung westerns for decades. I picked up a Guatemalan palm 2 years ago, it is very durable, but quite a bit heavier than other straws that I have had.


Ok what is the difference between a straw hat and a Shantung hat?
 

Aaron Hats

Vendor
Messages
539
Location
Does it matter?
Zig2k143 said:
Ok what is the difference between a straw hat and a Shantung hat?

There are different types of material used in making "straw" hats. Shantung is generally used for western hats but sometimes you find it used on fedoras.

Aaron
 

Zig2k143

Practically Family
Messages
507
Location
Drums, Pa
Aaron Hats said:
There are different types of material used in making "straw" hats. Shantung is generally used for western hats but sometimes you find it used on fedoras.

Aaron

Is it a good material?
 
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