I was cuttin up on another thread about shaving fur ... rabbits, etc ... but all kidding aside, it would be wise for someone to come up with a way to work with wool to make a passable felt even if it costs close to fur.
We are living on borrowed time and the only reason PETA isn't working to shut us all down is because no one pays attention to hats.
Eventually that will change and someone in the "right place" with the "right voice" ... some activist movie actor ... will take up the cause of doing away with all fur felt hats.
The time is coming and it won't matter whether they come from trapped animals or domestic ones ...
I doubt it. PETA only does things for publicity (see: their 'rejected' superbowl ads. They deliberately make them over the top so that they will get rejected by the networks so that they can continue their narrative that they are "shut out" of the media).
Even if such a day did some, people still buy and sell fur. PETA makes publicity, but little actual impact.
Ok, that happened a handful of times. People still wear fur, people still buy fur. Heck, even here in San Francisco there was recently (I'm talking within the past few months) a resurgence of having fur tails as an accessory (among young folks my age).
Since the 'ethics' angle seems to have been dragged in anyway, I should note from over here on the bunny-hugging side of the fence that the stricter elements of PETA and the Vegetarian Society aren't keen on wool anyway because most animals farmed for wool are treated pretty badly. You just can't win sometimes. =) I suppose the safest thing to do for us bleeding hearts is just to buy vintage hats, because whatever happened to the animals involved already happened and there's nothing you can do about it...
Since I promised - I went to the UK and picked up the Pachacuti hats. They're pretty hard hats, definitely not soft crushable like my Brixton wool fedoras. The straight-up 'Fedora' style one had a brim which, by my standards at least, is _really_ wide. The 'Fedora narrow brim' one I rather liked; its brim isn't what I'd call 'narrow', it's the same as on my 'standard' brim Robert Hall fur fedora, but it's certainly a pretty nice-looking hat. The manufacture is nothing incredibly special, I don't recall but I think they just have a fabric sweatband and no lining, but they feel solid enough and I like the look of the 'narrow brim' one.
The 'Fedora' one was also too small for me, despite me having specified the same (correct) size for both. I called them up and found their customer service is excellent, no automated system, just goes straight to a person who actually knew what they were talking about. She told me both the hat sizes and the brim sizes are subject to a bit of variation due to them being 'hand made' (which seems a weak excuse, but meh), and offered to exchange the too-small one with no trouble at all. She was fine with me exchanging it for a panama instead (I want a panama, and that brim was just too much for me). She said you can specify in your order that you want a 'bigger' or 'smaller' size or brim, so I can specify I want one of the bigger 'size 56's with a 'smaller' brim and they just go through the available stock and pick out one to match what you want. Bit haphazard, but it's nice to have the information. She told me the size they specify for the brims of the 'normal' Fedoras is 7cm, and that's pretty much what mine measured. For the metrically-challenged, that's a 2 3/4 inch brim, which is definitely on the 'wide' side. So if you're gonna order from them, probably best to specify your order quite carefully or do it over the phone, or be prepared to do an exchange if it turns out to be not quite what you wanted.
I definitely like the grey narrow-brim one though, and it's a good deal for the cheap price.
For the record I also got an old fur 'Leader' brand Homburg, made in England, from a vintage store for $60. score! My mother also produced my grandfather's old bowler hat, worn to funerals. It was made by a long-gone local hat shop and is built like an absolute tank, feels like it'd last a couple of centuries, with a thick leather sweat-band and ventilation holes in the crown. They sure don't make 'em like they used to any more.
it is time for me to bring to the forefront the ugly face of predijuce:eeek:
i am talking about the second class treatment of our wool wearing brothers and sisters .
I stand upon my soap box and say nooooooo nay i scream (WOOL ROOLS )
no longer will the haberdash improvished who cant afford fur felt be made to feel like poor relatives come to visit .
EVERYBODY and i mean EVERYBODY come out and proclaim wool is cool and lets all get along the fur and the wool !
lets show our wool hats me first after i learn to use my digital camera
but till then i proclaim this to be planet wool and for all wool wearers to feel safe here
Hope you have a thick skin for the flaming that is sure to follow - on that point you should see some of the other threads on this subject. Pointing out the hypocrisy tends to make the attacks more vicious.
This was my first custom hat. Western weight wool by Knudsen Hats at goldengatewesternwear.com
Bat Masterson in dark chocolate:
I paid over $100 for it and waited six months. It was a beautiful hat. Absolutely everything I was hoping for. Now that I've worn it in a light rain, the crown has tapered and the brim curl is difficult to maintain.
This is also a wool hat-- a "Murino" by Hats in the Belfry. It looks great... immediately after a very careful steaming... and is very comfortable with its cloth sweatband. But it wears like a dishrag and attracts pet hair like no other hat in my arsenal.
My wife paid $90 or so for it. I have never paid this much for any of my vintage fur felts acquired via eBay or antigue shop, and I probably still wouldn't. Just sayin' that in my case the financial attractiveness of a woolie doesn't really seem to pan out.
Bowlerman; I've been very curious about those "Murino" hats. Obviously, they are not a fur felt hat, but how do they compare to other wool hats you've worn? It would be nice to see better quality wool hats developed, but I just havent been able to bring myself to pay the price for a Murino to try it. I've had stiff cardboard like wool hats, and I've had nice soft (but thicker) "Lite Felt" wools that I really like, and still wear. Yes, they require different care, and y'all have convinced me not to wear one in the rain (I've been caught in light drizzle with no problem) but wool still has a place in my arsenal, and I'm sure I havent bought my last one. I see no dishonor in owning or wearing them, especially if one has a tight budget, and head larger than 6 7/8 making vintage alternatives all but out of the question.
From what I'm reading from everyone, it's best to have both kinds. Perhaps saving the fur felts for more... Special circumstances while the wool felts are just everyday hats. Fair enough. I only have a wool felt. She's been nice to me. Though starting to look pinkish in certain lighting rather than dark grey.
I'm sure a wool hat is just great! So is a pair of Speedos - and a fur coat. But a fur coat in Death Valley or a pair of Speedos in Antarctica would be completely ridiculous. Just as ridiculous as a wool hat in Denmark is
I have enough trouble getting 20 days of wear out of my panamas each year. I love my panamas, but they tend to be a little pricey in relation to the limited use, I can squeeze out of them.
I'm simply not wealthy enough to wear wool hats. In Denmark it's raining so often, that if I want to wear felt hats, I can only afford fur felt - and the cheapest in the long run is without a shadow of a doubt a hat in pure beaver!
tuco1963, maybe you should recognize how privileged you are in 'sunny Indiana'. Many of your fellow loungers live under much more humid/rainy conditions, and can not afford your extravagant habits. Many with responsibilities will have to think a little more economically justifiable, and we have to be content with the more durable and therefore cheaper beavers