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Purchasing my first Fedora

Txmason

Familiar Face
Messages
68
Location
Texas
First off, I would like to say thank you to everyone here at the Fedora Lounge. I have really enjoyed looking at all the interesting threads and photos!

I am interested in purchasing my first fedora, something lightweight for this darn Texas heat soon to come. I am stuck as to wether to purchase a lightweight fedora (felt I believe I'm not sure please correct me) or a panama hat. I would be greatful for any help, where to purchase etc.

Thank you so much!

Jerry
 

Shangas

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,114
Location
Melbourne, Australia
Take it from someone who lives in one of the hottest countries on earth - In summertime, you don't want to wear a felt hat.

Felt hats are designed for cold-weather wear. If the weather is cool, or if it's wintertime, you wear felt, to keep in the heat.

In summertime, if you wear a felt hat, you'll probably die of heatstroke. Or at the very least, give yourself a sweat-shower when you remove your hat, from the huge amounts of sweat pouring off your brow and hair.

For summer wear, or general hot-weather wear, I personally would suggest a boater or a Panama.

The boater is the traditional summertime men's hat. It's made of stiff straw. It's light and doesn't absorb heat like felt does. And the wide brim keeps the sun off your face and eyes (and when it's midday and the sun is really strong, that can be very handy).

Or you can get yourself a Panama.

The Panama has the benefit of being really light and floppy. Because of the reeds that it's made of, it's also very breathable. It won't become a mini greenhouse on top of your head, like a felt hat might. And its lightness means it'll wear a lot more comfortably on your head than a heavier felt hat will.

I'm trying to get my hands on a nice Panama, but so far, no dice. But for hot weather, if you can, I'd suggest a Panama or a Boater.
 

Txmason

Familiar Face
Messages
68
Location
Texas
@shangas

Thank you I didn't know there was that much of a difference. Can you get a panama hat that looks or is like a fedora minus the felt for a classic look? Since suggesting a panama, where should I look at styles of hats, models etc ?

If you are looking for a custom made felt or panama give Vince Corvelli in Bethseda, MD at www.americanhatters.com a try.

Jerry



QUOTE=Shangas;1393601]Take it from someone who lives in one of the hottest countries on earth - In summertime, you don't want to wear a felt hat.

Felt hats are designed for cold-weather wear. If the weather is cool, or if it's wintertime, you wear felt, to keep in the heat.

In summertime, if you wear a felt hat, you'll probably die of heatstroke. Or at the very least, give yourself a sweat-shower when you remove your hat, from the huge amounts of sweat pouring off your brow and hair.

For summer wear, or general hot-weather wear, I personally would suggest a boater or a Panama.

The boater is the traditional summertime men's hat. It's made of stiff straw. It's light and doesn't absorb heat like felt does. And the wide brim keeps the sun off your face and eyes (and when it's midday and the sun is really strong, that can be very handy).

Or you can get yourself a Panama.

The Panama has the benefit of being really light and floppy. Because of the reeds that it's made of, it's also very breathable. It won't become a mini greenhouse on top of your head, like a felt hat might. And its lightness means it'll wear a lot more comfortably on your head than a heavier felt hat will.

I'm trying to get my hands on a nice Panama, but so far, no dice. But for hot weather, if you can, I'd suggest a Panama or a Boater.[/QUOTE]
 

Detective_Noir

One of the Regulars
Messages
174
Location
Kansas
Fur Felt is a way to go for a fedora because of being crushable and weather durable. but do not under any circumstance leave your hat in a HEATED area because the felt will shring as ive seen with mine when i left it in the cars dash board during the summer. i always wore my fedora in the summer to block out the sun from my face never really liked panamas IMO, but all in all its water repellent and extremely reliable for a hat.
 

1961MJS

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,341
Location
Norman Oklahoma
Hi

I wouldn't buy a felt fedora for summertime in Texas. It's usually hot enough here in Kansas, but it's even hotter down there. I would suggest a trip to Peters Brother's Hats in Fort Worth if you can swing it.

http://www.pbhats.com/private/index.htm

Another option is to order from Panama Bob, buy a VERY inexpensive hat for your first one. You won't like it for some reason (too much crown, too little crown, brim too wide, to thin, etc), and there's no sense spending the Big $ on a pretty fragile hat. You can spend anywhere from $40 to $1200 for a Panama hat.

http://www.panamas.biz/

Just my $0.02
 
Last edited:

jkingrph

Practically Family
Messages
841
Location
Jacksonville, Tx, West Monroe, La.
All good comments from other members here.

I live in E. Texas, basically the deep south. It's hot and humid in my part of the state. Last summer we had roughly 3 months straight of over 100 degee days, many over 110, and I lied about the humidity that summer, no rain so everything dried up and humidity was low, which is abnormal for here.

I have several fedora types from Panama Bob and they are nice, lower middle grade. I still sweat so bad that I can ruin a straw hat easily. I would suggest even with a Panama (straw) get a vented model, either woven vents or have a few vent grommets installed

They are not very dressy, but I have a few Tilley hats that are vented , as well as real cheap one from Tractor Supply thats cotton, and nylon mesh on the sides of the crown that is the best that I have found for outdoor activities in the hot weather, It seems to catch any breeze and funnel it across the top of my head, plus I can just rinse it off in the shower and let dry overnight.

Bottom line for this part of the country, felt for cool weather, straw for warm and hot.
 

Buggnkat

Familiar Face
Messages
94
Location
Some place hot and humid
JK hit the nail solid. Down south along the Gulf, you wear a felt during the summer by 10am youre a puddle on the pavement.

Get a nice straw for summer, and these can be had for a decent price (compared to felts) and if you ruin them aweating, no big deal just buy a new one! For winter get a good felt. Buy a good one and you buy it once, buy cheap quality, and you will spend what you would have for a good one the first time.
 
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