Summer is quickly approaching and we want you to feel confident in your style while also being protected from those sun rays! Whether you’re laying on the beach (hopefully soon!) or taking a walk in the summer breeze, our Panama straw hats are a perfect way to elevate your summer look. We can also guarantee you’ll be wearing a special piece handcrafted by the most talented craftsman, each spending hours and hours weaving the most beautiful straw in the finest detail.
The words “Panama hat” can be a bit deceiving! The straw used for our Panama hats is handwoven in Ecuador, then sent to our US hat makers to size and press into our designed hat shapes. Now you may be thinking, “Ecuador? I thought these hats were from Panama?” Actually, the hats, handwoven of 100% toquilla straw, were originally known as Toquilla hats. In the late 1800s, they became known to the world as Panama hats because they were worn by the workers who were building the Panama Canal. In 1906, U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt visited the construction site of the Panama Canal and was photographed wearing a Panama hat, making this particular hat even more popular around the world.
When starting on the weave, Ecuadorian artisans choose the longest and tenderest stems available to cut. The stems are then boiled and set out to dry under the intense Ecuadorian sun rays. Woven with great experience from generation to generation, a single weaver can take anywhere from 8-10 hours to complete the weaving process - and that’s just to complete the straw weave used for one hat!
Our Panama straw hats are all unisex, with variations of the fedora shape, except for The Clementine, which is our colorful patterned Panama straw visor. Due to the toquilla straw being handwoven, each hat is truly one of a kind - promising to keep your head cooler and skin protected from harsh UV rays all summer long! The finer the fiber and tighter the weave, the higher the grade, quality, and SPF factor. So, protect your skin and put on your handcrafted Panama hat when you’re lounging in the sun or going for those much-needed daily walks!
~ Article Written by Allie Albrecht, Jamie Slye Intern