Want to buy or sell something? Check the classifieds
  • The Fedora Lounge is supported in part by commission earning affiliate links sitewide. Please support us by using them. You may learn more here.

Panama Hat Thread

Messages
10,539
Location
vancouver, canada
I don't see many recent posts to this forum. I think it's worth reminding Juhani and others that Panama Hats Direct is still running their sale. Casey keeps sending emails. and the latest is offering a 30% discount on custom or stock hats. The pricess are very nice. Can you get nicer blocking or sweatbands? Yes. Can you get a better genuine Montecristi Panama Hat at these prices? Nowhere I've seen. I've ordered twice from PHD, and Casey is making me want to place another order. Btw, remember, you can talk with PHD directly on the phone, and they'll send you pics of stock hats and during the process. If you pull the trigger, let us see!
I am happy in a general sense with my PHD. The weave is decent. I ordered it without ribbon or sweat as I cannot abide glued on ribbon and cheap cloth sweats. My goal is to compete on weave quality and provide an upgraded vintage hand sewn ribbon and roan leather sweat for about the same money.
 

Rmccamey

I'll Lock Up
Messages
5,710
Location
Central Texas
Are you going to have any with ventilated crowns, Robert?

I am bringing in Panama blanks for this spring. My plan is to offer decent quality weave counts for a reasonable price, vintage grosgrain ribbon and roan leather sweats. I will know this week for certain and can set my selling price. If still in the market drop me a note in a few days.
 

JeffOYB

Vendor
Messages
206
Location
Michigan
I have searched for Panama Hats Direct, PHD and Casey to find a post that has the latest news about them. The last I knew from last year -- as I vaguely recall from posts here -- was that Casey had quit, there was a breakup, I missed a huge clearance sale, and hardly any hats were at the website, and William had started his own place. But now I see hats again at PHD. Can anyone give a little summary? I have bought several hats over the years from them and had good relations with them. Thanks!
 

JeffOYB

Vendor
Messages
206
Location
Michigan
Here is another question --> Does anyone know where I can get a paisley hat band? (Red, yellow and gold is the color scheme I am after.) I have never noticed a paisley band in the huge PHD lineup. Thanks.
 

The Shoe

One Too Many
Messages
1,913
Location
Wakayama, Japan
Here is another question --> Does anyone know where I can get a paisley hat band? (Red, yellow and gold is the color scheme I am after.) I have never noticed a paisley band in the huge PHD lineup. Thanks.
The Village Hat shop has paisley puggarees, but I’m not sure they have the colours you’re after. I have a green one from them.
 

The Shoe

One Too Many
Messages
1,913
Location
Wakayama, Japan
I am bringing in Panama blanks for this spring. My plan is to offer decent quality weave counts for a reasonable price, vintage grosgrain ribbon and roan leather sweats. I will know this week for certain and can set my selling price. If still in the market drop me a note in a few days.
I’ll be keeping an eye on that. My summer hat collection is rather lacking.
 

Juhani

New in Town
Messages
26
Location
Finland
I am bringing in Panama blanks for this spring. My plan is to offer decent quality weave counts for a reasonable price, vintage grosgrain ribbon and roan leather sweats. I will know this week for certain and can set my selling price. If still in the market drop me a note in a few days.
Sadly, I'm afraid I missed this opportunity for now. I had a fear Panama Hats Directs sale would be ending soon so I was quick to submit an order there, and hence, I saw this offer too late.
 

JC Montecristi Hat

New in Town
Messages
33
Location
Manta, Manabí, Ecuador
Hello.

Having overcome the disadvantages of certain supplies, I present new colors. According to our tests, we could dye without problems straw for a grade 25 hat with the recipe we developed, maybe even fino.

1705854705721.jpg

IMG_20240120_103833.jpg
IMG_20240120_103431.jpg
 

Juhani

New in Town
Messages
26
Location
Finland
This is made by Panama Hats Direct, grade “Montecristi Fino.” Considering the price I value the quality as stunning. It’s soft and smooth, and the texture is very subtle, keeping in mind the grade is the second lowest in Panama Hats Direct’s repertoire.

The model is center dent, and it’s called “Trilby.” The crown tapers more than I expected, but the side profile is very beautiful as the crown height reaches its peak at 4.75’’ / 12 cm.

There must be American hatters whom I’ve never heard of and who block Panama hats with equally high crowns, but expectedly their prices go high as well. Generally, I like the idea that one doesn’t just buy mere hat bodies from Ecuador, but also products refined and finished to the end.

As for the service, the PHD staff is friendly and practical.

I’ve measured my head hundreds of times, but since I don’t buy hats very often, I’m still very unsure when it comes to selecting the right hats size. So this time again I became nervous and had fears that the hat might be too snug, so I ordered it in size 59cm, which is slightly too loose for me. I should have known better, for now my front finger goes easily between the hat and head. I’m not sure if this is a bad sign with regards to how the toquilla palm straw will change in real use. Natural fiber seems to adapt to different weather conditions, and my other Panama hats have either shrunk or widened. Have you ever experienced the same?

Now, before these selfies, I folded a paper towel under the sweatband, and I think it works. The hat certainly doesn’t look too big, yet the fit isn’t as comfortable as it would be if the hat was exactly the right size, but I think the hat looks nice.

Overall, I see no reason why not to recommend Panama Hats Direct.
front.jpg
side.jpg
 
Messages
10,539
Location
vancouver, canada
This is made by Panama Hats Direct, grade “Montecristi Fino.” Considering the price I value the quality as stunning. It’s soft and smooth, and the texture is very subtle, keeping in mind the grade is the second lowest in Panama Hats Direct’s repertoire.

The model is center dent, and it’s called “Trilby.” The crown tapers more than I expected, but the side profile is very beautiful as the crown height reaches its peak at 4.75’’ / 12 cm.

There must be American hatters whom I’ve never heard of and who block Panama hats with equally high crowns, but expectedly their prices go high as well. Generally, I like the idea that one doesn’t just buy mere hat bodies from Ecuador, but also products refined and finished to the end.

As for the service, the PHD staff is friendly and practical.

I’ve measured my head hundreds of times, but since I don’t buy hats very often, I’m still very unsure when it comes to selecting the right hats size. So this time again I became nervous and had fears that the hat might be too snug, so I ordered it in size 59cm, which is slightly too loose for me. I should have known better, for now my front finger goes easily between the hat and head. I’m not sure if this is a bad sign with regards to how the toquilla palm straw will change in real use. Natural fiber seems to adapt to different weather conditions, and my other Panama hats have either shrunk or widened. Have you ever experienced the same?

Now, before these selfies, I folded a paper towel under the sweatband, and I think it works. The hat certainly doesn’t look too big, yet the fit isn’t as comfortable as it would be if the hat was exactly the right size, but I think the hat looks nice.

Overall, I see no reason why not to recommend Panama Hats Direct.
I too like my PHD but could not abide the cheap glued on ribbon and the crap cloth sweat. It wouldn't cost him that much extra to add better quality components and elevate the entire hat. It is decent straw, nice weave but he cheapens his product with crap trimmings.
 
Messages
19,005
Location
Central California
This is made by Panama Hats Direct, grade “Montecristi Fino.” Considering the price I value the quality as stunning. It’s soft and smooth, and the texture is very subtle, keeping in mind the grade is the second lowest in Panama Hats Direct’s repertoire.

The model is center dent, and it’s called “Trilby.” The crown tapers more than I expected, but the side profile is very beautiful as the crown height reaches its peak at 4.75’’ / 12 cm.

There must be American hatters whom I’ve never heard of and who block Panama hats with equally high crowns, but expectedly their prices go high as well. Generally, I like the idea that one doesn’t just buy mere hat bodies from Ecuador, but also products refined and finished to the end.

As for the service, the PHD staff is friendly and practical.

I’ve measured my head hundreds of times, but since I don’t buy hats very often, I’m still very unsure when it comes to selecting the right hats size. So this time again I became nervous and had fears that the hat might be too snug, so I ordered it in size 59cm, which is slightly too loose for me. I should have known better, for now my front finger goes easily between the hat and head. I’m not sure if this is a bad sign with regards to how the toquilla palm straw will change in real use. Natural fiber seems to adapt to different weather conditions, and my other Panama hats have either shrunk or widened. Have you ever experienced the same?

Now, before these selfies, I folded a paper towel under the sweatband, and I think it works. The hat certainly doesn’t look too big, yet the fit isn’t as comfortable as it would be if the hat was exactly the right size, but I think the hat looks nice.

Overall, I see no reason why not to recommend Panama Hats Direct. View attachment 591931 View attachment 591932


I have a couple PHD hats I bought a couple years ago that I really tried to like, but not only was the ribbon and bow cheaply done, the low crown just never looked right to me. I’ve given up on nicer Panama hats and I’m sticking to cheaper semi-disposable Panama hats.
 

Juhani

New in Town
Messages
26
Location
Finland
I too like my PHD but could not abide the cheap glued on ribbon and the crap cloth sweat. It wouldn't cost him that much extra to add better quality components and elevate the entire hat. It is decent straw, nice weave but he cheapens his product with crap trimmings.
Nowadays the PHD sews leather sweatbands, but they don't specify what kind of leather that is. I don't know hats well enough to judge the quality. To my eye, this looks good. Admittedly, it's easy to criticize the ribbons because they might look like they were made cheaply on a Chinese assembly line. It's a summer hat so I don't expect it to be more dressy than it is. Perhaps a nice puggaree hatband would level up the appearance.

I have a couple PHD hats I bought a couple years ago that I really tried to like, but not only was the ribbon and bow cheaply done, the low crown just never looked right to me. I’ve given up on nicer Panama hats and I’m sticking to cheaper semi-disposable Panama hats.
In many cases, the crown height is an issue, really. Seems that low crowns are Ecuadorian standard these days. Also, it seems that hats in Stetson's EU selections have equally low crowns. In this regard, I settled for PHD's Trilby, whose crown is 4.75'' / 12cm.
 

Attachments

  • sweatband.jpg
    sweatband.jpg
    205 KB · Views: 43

Short Balding Guy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
9,721
Location
Minnesota, USA
The discussion above does hit on the negatives of sweat, ribbon and blocking. I would like to comment as to my wearing experiences.

Sweat - The leather sweat is not high quality like it's felt hat cousins (new or old). It is far better than the fabric sweats. I wore my 2 PHD's last summer frequently and did sweat and soak the leather sweats. No staining on the straw and the sweats. I popped them out and occasionally treated with a leather conditioner . They survived without noticeable wear. They are good to go this coming summer. I suspect I will need to change them by the end of the hot Minnesota weather.

Ribbon - I notice the glued on ribbon. Not a single person, even my wife noticed the ribbon. They did not get worse during the summers wear. It bothers me, but not enough to send out to have ribbons made for them.

Blocking - I deliberately chose the Havana style to get some space between my bald head and the top of the hat. Being a short and balding guy my small head benefits from scale. I have more space and from a side view the hat is relatively higher crowned. Good to be smaller.

As a consumer, I would purchase the hats again (I picked them up on sale). They were what I expected and wore as expected. All told, the hats are not what I would custom order, but they wore well and survived my efforts.

Focus on what they delivered - They are one of the few new straw options with weaving of this quality. The weaving is excellent at the price and quality points I purchased. The brim edges show only a bit of wear after a hard season of wearing. Blocking and brim stiffness did not change. If I am missing new quality straw options near this price point and within a 2 month delivery please add to my post.

Grey ribboned:

i-Z7nqFMt-M.jpg


The below collage shows the leather sweat. Not a grand sweat or elegant application.

i-pgBSxxr-M.jpg


Black ribboned:

i-2Wfqjx4-M.jpg


i-XkC4LVc-M.jpg



I hope I have contributed to this discussion. You hat folks will see me wearing when the warm weather gets to Minnesota.


Best, Eric -
 
Last edited:
Messages
10,539
Location
vancouver, canada
Nowadays the PHD sews leather sweatbands, but they don't specify what kind of leather that is. I don't know hats well enough to judge the quality. To my eye, this looks good. Admittedly, it's easy to criticize the ribbons because they might look like they were made cheaply on a Chinese assembly line. It's a summer hat so I don't expect it to be more dressy than it is. Perhaps a nice puggaree hatband would level up the appearance.


In many cases, the crown height is an issue, really. Seems that low crowns are Ecuadorian standard these days. Also, it seems that hats in Stetson's EU selections have equally low crowns. In this regard, I settled for PHD's Trilby, whose crown is 4.75'' / 12cm.
I ordered mine without sweat and without ribbon and I put on my own. It is now a great looking hat.
 
Messages
11,160
The discussion above does hit on the negatives of sweat, ribbon and blocking. I would like to comment as to my wearing experiences.

Sweat - The leather sweat is not high quality like it's felt hat cousins (new or old). It is far better than the fabric sweats. I wore my 2 PHD's last summer frequently and did sweat and soak the leather sweats. No staining on the straw and the sweats. I popped them out and occasionally treated with a leather conditioner . They survived without noticeable wear. They are good to go this coming summer. I suspect I will need to change them by the end of the hot Minnesota weather.

Ribbon - I notice the glued on ribbon. Not a single person, even my wife noticed the ribbon. They did not get worse during the summers wear. It bothers me, but not enough to send out to have ribbons made for them.

Blocking - I deliberately chose the Havana style to get some space between my bald head and the top of the hat. Being a short and balding guy my small head benefits from scale. I have more space and from a side view the hat is relatively higher crowned. Good to be smaller.

As a consumer, I would purchase the hats again (I picked them up on sale). They were what I expected and wore as expected. All told, the hats are not what I would custom order, but they wore well and survived my efforts.

Focus on what they delivered - They are one of the few new straw options with weaving of this quality. The weaving is excellent at the price and quality points I purchased. The brim edges show only a bit of wear after a hard season of wearing. Blocking and brim stiffness did not change. If I am missing new quality straw options near this price point and within a 2 month delivery please add to my post.

Grey ribboned:

i-Z7nqFMt-M.jpg


The below collage shows the leather sweat. Not a grand sweat or elegant application.

i-pgBSxxr-M.jpg


Black ribboned:

i-2Wfqjx4-M.jpg


i-XkC4LVc-M.jpg



I hope I have contributed to this discussion. You hat folks will see me wearing when the warm weather gets to Minnesota.


Best, Eric -
Nice exposé, Eric.
 
Messages
18,046
Location
Nederland
Montechristi Semi Calado panama hat from Montecuadorhats. Size 58 with the brim at 8,5cm and the crown at 10cm. I think this is in fact a women's hat, but I wanted it anyway to see if my assessment of the weave was right. It was; this is a finely woven hat. Quite floppy too.
Looking at the website of this company they seem to have finely woven hats on offer for good prices. The sweatband is fabric and the blocking is round rather than oval, which is consistent for a women's hat. If I wanted to convert it to a men's hat it would need some work. PM me if you want this one to convert it.

montechristi_11.JPG
montechristi_15.JPG
montechristi_22.JPG
montechristi_25.JPG
montechristi_27.JPG
montechristi_28.JPG
 

Forum statistics

Threads
107,718
Messages
3,045,364
Members
53,051
Latest member
Sandkissed
Top