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Formality Scale of Hats

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Dragon, Jul 4, 2006.

  1. contactme_11

    contactme_11 Senior member

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    What is a good summer hat for use with a suit? Like if you had to stand in the sun at a graduation or wedding. Is a Panama not formal enough?
     
  2. JLibourel

    JLibourel Senior member

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    Of true summer hats for men, I think the Panama is easily the most formal and elegant. The really high-quality ones cost an arm and leg--well into the low four figures.

    By way of contrast, I think anything much more than $400 for a fur felt hat (and a pure beaver one at that) gets into the realm of gouging.

    As for the difference between a fedora and a trilby, I think a trilby is a variant of the fedora that is generally softer, has a relatively narrow brim and hatband and is most commonly brown. Interesting that both got their names from being featured in eponymous theatrical productions.
     
  3. Anthony Jordan

    Anthony Jordan Senior member

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    What is a good summer hat for use with a suit? Like if you had to stand in the sun at a graduation or wedding. Is a Panama not formal enough?

    I'd agree with Jan that a panama should be fine; I regularly wear mine to the office in the summer with a suit. An alternative would be a very lightweight felt hat if you felt uncomfortable with thr light colour of the panama. Alternatively, I seem to remember having seen dyed straw hats on sale recently; a dark straw hat might be another way of approaching the question.

    Anthony.
     
  4. contactme_11

    contactme_11 Senior member

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    Is it taboo to wear a light to cream colored hat with a dark suit?
     
  5. Tomasso

    Tomasso Senior member

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    Is it taboo to wear a light to cream colored hat with a dark suit?

    No.
     
  6. JLibourel

    JLibourel Senior member

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    Al Capone favored pured white hats with dark suits, not that I would necessarily single him out as an arbiter elegantiae!
     
  7. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    I've seen Panamas that cost $20,000.
     
  8. Anthony Jordan

    Anthony Jordan Senior member

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    Is it taboo to wear a light to cream colored hat with a dark suit?

    I would say not, but if you feel you would be uncomfortable with the look, you could approach it by going for a lighter shade, say taupe or light grey, with a dark band - Hochswender's "Men in Style" (a book of 1930s-50s men's fashion illustrations) has one nice picture which shows a lightish brown hat with a black band, whilst my current favourite hat is light grey with a charcoal grey band.

    Anthony.
     
  9. yachtie

    yachtie Senior member

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    On many Panamas, (e.g. Dobbs) the band can be changed quite easily. Generally, I'd think it's correct to wear a Panama with a dark suit, especially if the hat has a dark band. (Done it myself with no ill effect)
     

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