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The Stratoliner Society {VINTAGE}

Messages
16,292
Location
Central California
Beautiful Strat. Now I have to go back through the thread and figure out when the Strat brim size got smaller. This one has the same dimensions as my OR with the same liner crest, sweat stamp, and tag style.


I sold all my 2 1/2” brim Strats…they just didn’t look right on my huge melon. This 2 3/4” brim is perfect for me.
 

Snowman

A-List Customer
Messages
476
I sold all my 2 1/2” brim Strats…they just didn’t look right on my huge melon. This 2 3/4” brim is perfect for me.
Agreed, and I do understand. 2 1/2” has been my preferred width, but now I’m wearing my 2 3/4” hats and thinking “Geez, this brim is small.” I just didn’t know Strats came in anything but 2 1/2”, so now I’m just a little bit more informed!
 

Blare

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,319
Royal De Luxe Stratoliner in 7 3/4! 5 5/8” open crown and 2 3/4” brim:

View attachment 382383 View attachment 382384 View attachment 382385 View attachment 382386 View attachment 382387 View attachment 382388 View attachment 382389 View attachment 382390

Some steam and brushing is still needed, but I couldn’t wait to share this hat.

Like many, I’ve long enjoyed seeing the spectacular parade of hats shared by Eric @Short Balding Guy Wether vintage hats, new custom hats, or custom caps, Eric has some of the best hats/caps extant. As much as his hat collection I’ve also admired Eric’s kindness and ability to remain above the fray. He is the consummate gentleman. Last week Eric offered me this hat. It’s clearly not his size but it’s all the more valuable because of that. Eric offered it to me a price that was a fraction of its value and I’m honored to now be its caretaker. I’ve met some very kind and very generous people here in our virtual lounge. Thank you, Eric.
How awesome. Glad to hear Eric was thinking of you. Perfect addition to your collection
 
Messages
17,778
Location
Funkytown, USA
I sold all my 2 1/2” brim Strats…they just didn’t look right on my huge melon. This 2 3/4” brim is perfect for me.

Agreed, and I do understand. 2 1/2” has been my preferred width, but now I’m wearing my 2 3/4” hats and thinking “Geez, this brim is small.” I just didn’t know Strats came in anything but 2 1/2”, so now I’m just a little bit more informed!

I'm going to guess they bumped up the dimensions because of the size of the hat.

That's a great Strat, Brent, and awfully kind of Eric to think of you.
 
Messages
15,904
Location
Nederland
Royal De Luxe Stratoliner in 7 3/4! 5 5/8” open crown and 2 3/4” brim:

View attachment 382383 View attachment 382384 View attachment 382385 View attachment 382386 View attachment 382387 View attachment 382388 View attachment 382389 View attachment 382390

Some steam and brushing is still needed, but I couldn’t wait to share this hat.

Like many, I’ve long enjoyed seeing the spectacular parade of hats shared by Eric @Short Balding Guy Wether vintage hats, new custom hats, or custom caps, Eric has some of the best hats/caps extant. As much as his hat collection I’ve also admired Eric’s kindness and ability to remain above the fray. He is the consummate gentleman. Last week Eric offered me this hat. It’s clearly not his size but it’s all the more valuable because of that. Eric offered it to me a price that was a fraction of its value and I’m honored to now be its caretaker. I’ve met some very kind and very generous people here in our virtual lounge. Thank you, Eric.
Beautiful Stratoliner, Brent. Makes sense to make the brim larger for the larger sizes to keep the proportions right. Hats off to Eric being a true gentleman and one of the finest hat collections around.
 
Messages
14,782
Location
Buffalo, NY
Royal De Luxe Stratoliner in 7 3/4! 5 5/8” open crown and 2 3/4” brim:

View attachment 382383 View attachment 382384 View attachment 382385 View attachment 382386 View attachment 382387 View attachment 382388 View attachment 382389 View attachment 382390

Some steam and brushing is still needed, but I couldn’t wait to share this hat.

Like many, I’ve long enjoyed seeing the spectacular parade of hats shared by Eric @Short Balding Guy Wether vintage hats, new custom hats, or custom caps, Eric has some of the best hats/caps extant. As much as his hat collection I’ve also admired Eric’s kindness and ability to remain above the fray. He is the consummate gentleman. Last week Eric offered me this hat. It’s clearly not his size but it’s all the more valuable because of that. Eric offered it to me a price that was a fraction of its value and I’m honored to now be its caretaker. I’ve met some very kind and very generous people here in our virtual lounge. Thank you, Eric.

Fantastic hat and great story all around.
 
Messages
15,904
Location
Nederland
Royal Stetson in brown. Made under license in England by Failsworth. Size 56 with the bound brim at 6,5cm and the crown at 11cm at the center dent. It doesn't say so on the hat, but this looks like a Stratoliner to me. Don't let the ribbon fool you: I've found Stratoliners marked as such for the European market with different ribbons before. Failsworth didn't use the block numbers that Stetson used, so there's nothing to go on in that regard.
The hand of the felt is wonderful and the ribbon is both European in feel as a nod to the thin ribbon style preferred in America. Conveniently the hat is dated: 31 dec 1952.

stetson-oslo_01-jpg.390864
stetson-oslo_02-jpg.390865
stetson-oslo_03-jpg.390866
stetson-oslo_04-jpg.390867
stetson-oslo_06-jpg.390868
stetson-oslo_07-jpg.390869
stetson-oslo_08-jpg.390870
stetson-oslo_09-jpg.390871
stetson-oslo_11-jpg.390872
stetson-oslo_12-jpg.390873
 
Messages
17,778
Location
Funkytown, USA
Royal Stetson in brown. Made under license in England by Failsworth. Size 56 with the bound brim at 6,5cm and the crown at 11cm at the center dent. It doesn't say so on the hat, but this looks like a Stratoliner to me. Don't let the ribbon fool you: I've found Stratoliners marked as such for the European market with different ribbons before. Failsworth didn't use the block numbers that Stetson used, so there's nothing to go on in that regard.
The hand of the felt is wonderful and the ribbon is both European in feel as a nod to the thin ribbon style preferred in America. Conveniently the hat is dated: 31 dec 1952.

stetson-oslo_01-jpg.390864
stetson-oslo_02-jpg.390865
stetson-oslo_03-jpg.390866
stetson-oslo_04-jpg.390867
stetson-oslo_06-jpg.390868
stetson-oslo_07-jpg.390869
stetson-oslo_08-jpg.390870
stetson-oslo_09-jpg.390871
stetson-oslo_11-jpg.390872
stetson-oslo_12-jpg.390873

Nice looking hat, but I wouldn't call it a Stratoliner.
 
Messages
17,778
Location
Funkytown, USA
Thanks, Jim. What disqualifies it for you? Is it the missing name or something else aboiut the hat?

Well, first I'd like to witness a few examples of what you speak of - a European marked Stratoliner with a different width ribbon. Or at the very least, an advertisement for one. A Stratoliner is a thin ribbon hat and, for the most part, has certain dimensions (with exceptions of course). I'd never look at this hat and say, "Hey, that's a Strat."

I own a 3X OR that is an OR in every respect - correct dimensions, block number, everything, but it doesn't say Open Road anywhere on it. I call it an OR, but it really isn't (maybe). If I were to list it for sale, I wouldn't call it an OR. I'd call it everything but; however, I wouldn't feel good listing it as an OR. Similarly, I once owned and sold a Stetson that had a Stratoliner sweatband in it, but was a low crown stingy. When I sold it, I didn't call it a Strat, I just couldn't.

If you were going to list this on eBay, would you list it as a Stratoliner?

Regardless, it's a beautiful hat. The color combo is spot on, and the ribbon/bow reminds me of the Gannon I just got a few months ago.
 
Messages
15,904
Location
Nederland
Well, first things first. Here's the example of the Stratoliner labelled hat with a different ribbon:
stetson strato caribou_02.jpg
stetson strato caribou_07.jpg
stetson strato caribou_09.jpg
stetson strato caribou_11.jpg


A German made Excellent Stetson Stratoliner in Caribou colour. Obviously they tried to find a more prominent place for Stetson on the European market and felt that this was maybe more to the European tastes.
Mind you, not all European made Stratoliners I've seen have this ribbon. This black one has the usual ribbon treatment. Also German market.
stetson stratoliner black_01.jpg
stetson stratoliner black_07.jpg
stetson stratoliner black_08.jpg
stetson stratoliner_11.jpg


Second part: would I list this one as a Stratoliner? No, I wouldn't, but in this case I don't have anything except the dimensions to go on for the claim. I've had a similar situation as you had with another Stetson without the name (I think it was a Playboy) but with the right blocknumber. Best I can do in such a case is point out the information and let the buyer decide for him or herself.
In this case I'm trying to figure out where this fits in the Stetson pantheon of hats and its shape and dimensions made me think "stratoliner". Im inclined to think that Stetson itself was not as discerning as us collectors where it came to the distinction between their various models. Dave @DaveProc posted a series of ads recently where a line-up of quite different hats were all advertised as "Open Road".
There is another difference between my Stratoliner hat and this hat (aside from the ribbon) and that is the way the brim binding was done.
"real"
brim orig.jpg


This one:
BP2B7007b.jpg


Does this mean anything? Maybe, maybe not. Wether it can be considered a stratoliner or not doesn't detract from the hat, which indeed is a fine looking Stetson. Can I make a case it being a stratoliner? Other than the shape and dimensions I don't have anything tangible to go on, so probably not.
Thanks for your thoughts, Jim.
 

Jokerwolf

New in Town
Messages
12
Location
California
Hey! I have a quick question. Sorry if there's a better place so point me that direction if so. I'd like to know about Quality. I have seen several different hats now of different styles called "the sovereign" I was under the impression that that was a felt quality, not a model and if I'm correct, how do you differentiate and how does sovereign quality rate? Can anyone clear this up for me? Thanks!
 

Blare

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,319
Well, the important thing is that Excellent Strat is my size. :D

That extra row of stitching just inside the brim binding on the brown one, though, is not a Strat feature. So the ribbon and the stitching, to me, make it a wonderful European Stetson, but that's it.
I may be wrong and I’d like to see closer pictures.. but I don’t think it’s so much an extra row of stitching… more so the brim binding is wider on the underside of the brim than on the top.
 
Messages
16,292
Location
Central California
Hey! I have a quick question. Sorry if there's a better place so point me that direction if so. I'd like to know about Quality. I have seen several different hats now of different styles called "the sovereign" I was under the impression that that was a felt quality, not a model and if I'm correct, how do you differentiate and how does sovereign quality rate? Can anyone clear this up for me? Thanks!


It kind of depends on when it was made. It was and is a felt quality (not that I see it in their current offerings), but it was also a model…sort of. You can buy a Sovereign (felt quality) Temple (model), but there is also the older Sovereign Twenty that doesn’t have another model name printed on the hat so “Sovereign” is also used as the model. That’s been my understanding anyway. Those old hats may have had factory model names that were not printed on the hat, but that’s just speculation.

What I do know, if you find a mid-1950s or earlier Sovereign in a style you like you should buy it. :)
 
Last edited:
Messages
15,904
Location
Nederland
Well, the important thing is that Excellent Strat is my size. :D

That extra row of stitching just inside the brim binding on the brown one, though, is not a Strat feature. So the ribbon and the stitching, to me, make it a wonderful European Stetson, but that's it.
Thanks, Jim. You'll have to talk to our man in Verona about the Excellent Strat.:)
I may be wrong and I’d like to see closer pictures.. but I don’t think it’s so much an extra row of stitching… more so the brim binding is wider on the underside of the brim than on the top.
It is indeed, but there are two rows of stitching anyway. The first is invisible because the brim binding is folded over it. Hückel Welheim used to do these kind of brim bindings often.
 
Messages
16,292
Location
Central California
Thanks, Jim. You'll have to talk to our man in Verona about the Excellent Strat.:)

It is indeed, but there are two rows of stitching anyway. The first is invisible because the brim binding is folded over it. Hückel Welheim used to do these kind of brim bindings often.


Curious: have you seen it were the top binding is wider and the underside shows the two rows? I thought about that on a past custom but went in another direction.
 

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