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Panama Hat Thread

GregoryB

New in Town
Messages
6
@alanfgag sold this in the classifieds a few months ago. I was just a bit too slow and missed it. I finally got it from the person who was a little faster on the draw. It arrived today. It needs to be cleaned up a bit but I couldn't wait. I put a pug on it and snapped some pictures. So now I HAVE ONE OF ALAN'S HATS!!!! How cool is that!

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That is an AMAZING find! wow! It's a Beaute!
 

DanO

One of the Regulars
Messages
227
Location
San Jose CA
New PHD


Panama Hat Dir1 (2).jpg Panama Hat Dir2 (2).jpg
 

Tukwila

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,382
Location
SW of Antifa Central (PDX)
Mike, I had heard the same so was a little hesitant. Cuenca Grade 6 Havana Panama Hat size 61 with a Dark Brown ribbon under $100.
They are still having a sale https://www.panamahatsdirect.com/. The sale covered the shipping order to delivery in CA was 3 weeks 6 days. I did get it for next year but its supposed to be in the 80's this weekend.
I give props to PHD for not overstating their grading on hats. I have seen a lot of companies and vendors advertising their hats as either Montecristi and/or something like Grade 10-12+ and they were actually more like Cuenca Grade 4-5, or less.

@DanO has a great looking hat for a reasonable price. If I didn't hand pick my own from Ecuador personally on trips to visit the in-laws, PHD would be a serious consideration for me.
 
Messages
10,510
Location
Boston area
Bill's hat is indeed amazing!
How about my find? :D

Will you be wearing that badboy? You should, and be wicked proud!!
It's possibly the nicest hat you'll ever own... unless you get the bug. Then you can decide for yourself where you want to be. Now that you've seen a few to compare, you should have an idea of how fine paja weave can be. You're absolutely right, though... it's quite a nicely woven hat.

Wear it in good health. Post a couple of shots!!
 
Messages
19,005
Location
Central California
I have a couple PHD hats and my only real complaint is their sweatbands. They say they are real leather, but they are rubbery and cheap feeling. Some have reported allergic reactions to their sweats as well. When I add in the cost of replacing the sweats they are less appealing unless steeply discounted. Just my opinion.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 
Messages
10,510
Location
Boston area
I have a couple PHD hats and my only real complaint is their sweatbands. They say they are real leather, but they are rubbery and cheap feeling. Some have reported allergic reactions to their sweats as well. When I add in the cost of replacing the sweats they are less appealing unless steeply discounted. Just my opinion.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

I’m one of the afflicted ones who needs to have them swapped due to allergic reaction. I’m a very sensitive guy; what can I say?

I can say that you’re correct about the added expense, and the discount needs to cover the cost. But it always has, in my experience. Especially in the higher priced hats.

Bottom line: One of the best values in Panama Hats on the inter-tubes.
 

Hatyulo

New in Town
Messages
26
Will you be wearing that badboy? You should, and be wicked proud!!
It's possibly the nicest hat you'll ever own... unless you get the bug. Then you can decide for yourself where you want to be. Now that you've seen a few to compare, you should have an idea of how fine paja weave can be. You're absolutely right, though... it's quite a nicely woven hat.

Wear it in good health. Post a couple of shots!!

Thank you for the encouragement HatsRme!
Earlier this year I promised myself a Montecristi Optimo as birthday present but I bought a watch intead even so the time has arrived by this deal...

I was a bit hesitant though since I saw it was a nice brand new hat yet didn't know anything about its exact wave count, the second reason was that sadly it was the very last in stock and bigger than my regular hat size.
Yesterdsy just received a couple of more detailed pics from the (online) seller along with a tape measure and I counted 25-26 WPI, the seller also stated 10 waves / cm.
So I made up my mind and ordered it.
The size still concerns me... anyway, I do hope I'll be able to adjust it by shrinking by steaming and using hat sizer / tightening self adhesive tapes, whatever...

Apropos, do you gentlemen have any other professional advice how to shrink a panama?
(Yeah I know, wear a beanie or baseball cap under it, tie it to my head with a band and tie a nice bow below my chin...:D :D)
I'd really appreciate any advice about sizing.

If I won't be able to manage it might appear
on FL for sale soon... I hope I don't have to mske this cruel move though. :)

Hatyulo
 
Last edited:
Messages
10,510
Location
Boston area
Thank you for the encouragement HatsRme!
Earlier this year I promised myself a Montecristi Optimo as birthday present but I bought a watch intead even so the time has arrived by this deal...

I was a bit hesitant though since I saw it was a nice brand new hat yet didn't know anything about its exact wave count, the second reason was that sadly it was the very last in stock and bigger than my regular hat size.
Yesterdsy just received a couple of more detailed pics from the (online) seller along with a tape measure and I counted 25-26 WPI, the seller also stated 10 waves / cm.
So I made up my mind and ordered it.
The size still concerns me... anyway, I do hope I'll be able to adjust it by shrinking by steaming and using hat sizer / tightening self adhesive tapes, whatever...

Apropos, do you gentlemen have any other professional advice how to shrink a panama?
(Yeah I know, wear a beanie or baseball cap under it, tie it to my head with a band and tie a nice bow below my chin...:D :D)
I'd really appreciate any advice about sizing.

If I won't be able to manage it might appear
on FL for sale soon... I hope I don't have to mske this cruel move though. :)

Hatyulo

You bought it, and now you want to know how to make it fit?

I’m not a lawyer, but do you sign a contract, and THEN ask your attorney if it’s ok?

Straw is not felt, and cannot be stretched or shrunk. Therefor you have only a few options. First, you could wrap your head horizontally with several layers of ribbon (modern or vintage is fine) until achieving a proper fit, or second, and probably a better option, use “shim” pieces in (first) the back beneath the sweatband. If just padding the back isn’t enough, add more to the front of the lid, also beneath the sweat. To do this, you can use felt strips, cork, folded newspaper, (the preferred material decades ago) or weatherstripping. Do NOT use the adhesive on the weatherstrip, though.

Or, third, buy the right size IF you can’t make this one fit.

Best of luck.
 

Tukwila

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,382
Location
SW of Antifa Central (PDX)
Thank you for the encouragement HatsRme!
Earlier this year I promised myself a Montecristi Optimo as birthday present but I bought a watch intead even so the time has arrived by this deal...

I was a bit hesitant though since I saw it was a nice brand new hat yet didn't know anything about its exact wave count, the second reason was that sadly it was the very last in stock and bigger than my regular hat size.
Yesterdsy just received a couple of more detailed pics from the (online) seller along with a tape measure and I counted 25-26 WPI, the seller also stated 10 waves / cm.
So I made up my mind and ordered it.
The size still concerns me... anyway, I do hope I'll be able to adjust it by shrinking by steaming and using hat sizer / tightening self adhesive tapes, whatever...

Apropos, do you gentlemen have any other professional advice how to shrink a panama?
(Yeah I know, wear a beanie or baseball cap under it, tie it to my head with a band and tie a nice bow below my chin...:D :D)
I'd really appreciate any advice about sizing.

If I won't be able to manage it might appear
on FL for sale soon... I hope I don't have to mske this cruel move though. :)

Hatyulo
So was the hat actually blocked and finished by Optimo? If so, sizing is probably pretty correct as marked. Otherwise, my experience says wait and see. I have the advantage of trying Panama hats on in person to see how they fit.

I have one hat marked 63 cm (!) and it fits my 59.4 cm head just fine. Once in a nice mall in Guayaquil I tried on 10 hats in a stack of finished high weave count Cuenca hats marked 59 cm and 8 were too small, one was too big and one fit.

So, in my travels sizing has been hit or miss with Panama hats. But, better a touch too big than too small. Do as Charlie says and put shims under the sweat band if necessary. Slight looseness isn't a big deal unless it's windy enough to blow your new hat into the river!
 

Hatyulo

New in Town
Messages
26
So was the hat actually blocked and finished by Optimo? If so, sizing is probably pretty correct as marked. Otherwise, my experience says wait and see. I have the advantage of trying Panama hats on in person to see how they fit.

I have one hat marked 63 cm (!) and it fits my 59.4 cm head just fine. Once in a nice mall in Guayaquil I tried on 10 hats in a stack of finished high weave count Cuenca hats marked 59 cm and 8 were too small, one was too big and one fit.

So, in my travels sizing has been hit or miss with Panama hats. But, better a touch too big than too small. Do as Charlie says and put shims under the sweat band if necessary. Slight looseness isn't a big deal unless it's windy enough to blow your new hat into the river!

Thank you Tukwila!
Yes, as Bob said I just meant the shape / style of the hat as Optimo.
I have a $100-ish Cuanca that I use for rough travels, tripocal environment, got rain, was crushed by luggages in airplanes overhead lockers, etc, that hat survives everything but shrank quite a lot once it was soaked then dried...
I had to steam it and pull on my had to make it looser (get the right size actually) again.
 
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Messages
15,040
Location
Buffalo, NY
Elias Israel was selling straw hats in NYC in 1902, perhaps earlier. He registered the trademark "Supernatural" in 1921. The Ecuadorian Panama Hat Company was a steady source for some of the nicest Montecristi, milan and leghorn woven straw hats during the first half of the 20th century. This example is no exception - a quality weave of approximately 700 wpi in the optimo or classic form, 5" crown, 2 3/4" brim. Mint condition. It is too large for me at 7 1/2 so I have listed it for sale in the classifieds.

monte1.jpg


monte2.jpg


monte3.jpg


monte4.jpg
 

Bill Hughes

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,135
Location
North Texas
Kinda out of season but I recently got this off eBay. I made an offer and the seller accepted. It's labeled as Leghorn Straw and sold by Lowey & Co of Portland, OR. I did find a newspaper ad from Portland dated November 22, 1912. But I have not been able to find any other information. I love the ribbon on this.

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jonbuilder

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,562
Location
Grass Valley CA Foothills
I have two question regarding purchasing a montecristi hat
First, the best price per weave count seems to be Modesto hats in Ecuador where a 30 weave per inch hat cast $535 shipped.
Does anyone who is this company connected to the weaver by the name Modesto who Panama Bob purchased hat bodies from?
The second question I think I already know the answer. I tried unsuccessfully to communicate with two companies selling montecristi hats from Ecuador if I can get a custom block to head shape long oval and have the hat finished with a good quality leather sweatband. I high light the words quality leather sweatband and long oval to bring their attention to what I am asking of them. All replies I got do not mention leather sweatband or long oval; only they can supply a hat.
So my question; if I believe I save money buying a good quality montecristi weave in Ecuador rather than from a US company like Optimo Hats, would I be better off forgetting the custom block and finish in Ecuador and just plan on mailing the hat to Art Fawcett for a reblock and refinish?
 

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