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For other uses, see Fedora (disambiguation).
A fedora made by Borsalino with a gutter-dent, side-dented crown, the front of the brim "snapped down" and the back "snapped up"

A fedora /fˈdɔərə/ is a felt hat with a wide brim and indented crown.[1][2] It is typically creased lengthwise down the crown and "pinched" near the front on both sides.[3] Fedoras can also be creased with teardrop crowns, diamond crowns, center dents, and others, and the positioning of pinches can vary. The typical crown height is 4.5 inches (11 cm).

The brim is usually approximately 2.5 inches (6.4 cm) wide, but may be wider,[1] can be left "raw edged" (left as cut), finished with a sewn overwelt or underwelt, or bound with a trim-ribbon.

The term fedora was in use as early as 1891. Its popularity soared, and eventually it eclipsed the similar-looking homburg.[1]


Another example of a fedora made by Borsalino, with a pinch-front teardrop-shaped crown

The word fedora comes from the title of an 1882 play by dramatist Victorien Sardou, Fédora being written for Sarah Bernhardt.[4] The play was first performed in the United States in 1889. Bernhardt played Princess Fédora, the heroine of the play. During the play, Bernhardt – a notorious cross-dresser – wore a center-creased, soft brimmed hat. The hat was fashionable for women, and the women's rights movement adopted it as a symbol.[5][2] After Prince Edward of Britain started wearing them in 1924, it became popular among men for its stylishness and its ability to protect the wearer's head from the wind and weather.[2][5] Since the early part of the 20th century, many Haredi and other Orthodox Jews have made black fedoras normal to their daily wear.[6]

In popular culture[edit]

Fedoras have become widely associated with gangsters and Prohibition, which coincided with the height of the hat's popularity in the 1920s to early 1950s.[5][2] In the second half of the 1950s, it fell out of favor in a shift towards more informal clothing styles.[2][5] By the early 21st century, the fedora became a symbol of hipsters.[7]

Indiana Jones re-popularized the fedora in the Indiana Jones franchise.[8]

American college football coach Bear Bryant could be seen on national television wearing his trademark plaid and houndstooth fedoras. He also appeared on the cover of Time magazine in 1980 (under a headline reading "Supercoach") wearing a fedora.[9] Coach Tom Landry also wore the hat while he was the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys. It would later become his trademark image. A cenotaph dedicated to Landry with a depiction of his fedora was placed in the official Texas State Cemetery in Austin at the family's request.[10] In addition the Cowboys wore a patch on their uniforms during the 2000 season depicting Landry's fedora.[11]

Michael Jackson frequently wore a fedora in public appearances, concerts and video clips.[12][13]

The character Neal Caffrey can be seen wearing a fedora quite frequently on the TV series White Collar.[citation needed]

German anatomist Gunther von Hagens always wears a fedora during public appearances, including dissections of bodies.[14]

The fedora hat of the 9th president of Turkey, Süleyman Demirel, was a famous part of his image.[15] Anecdotes surrounding his hat – until he died 90 years old – are numerous.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Kilgour, Ruth Edwards (1958). A Pageant of Hats Ancient and Modern. R. M. McBride Company.
  2. ^ a b c d e "History of Fedora Hats". History of Hats. Retrieved 2014-06-24. 
  3. ^ Cotton, Elizabeth (1999). Hats. Stewart, Tabori & Chang.
  4. ^ Encarta Dictionary, Microsoft Encarta Premium Suite 2004.
  5. ^ a b c d Rath, Robert (2014-03-06). "The History And Abuse of The Fedora". The Escapist. Retrieved 2014-06-24. 
  6. ^ Shields, Jody; Dugdale, John (1991). Hats: A Stylish History and Collector's Guide. Clarkson Potter.
  7. ^ Rutenberg, Jim (2012-08-05). "Montauk’s Hipster Fatigue". The New York Times. pp. ST1. Retrieved 19 November 2015. 
  8. ^ Hellqvist, David (2013-09-04). "The Hats: Heads Up". Port Magazine. Retrieved 2013-10-10. 
  9. ^ B.J. Phillips (29 September 1980). "Football's Supercoach". TIME magazine. 
  10. ^ "Thomas Wade Landry". Texas State Cemetery. Retrieved 2013-03-04. 
  11. ^ "ESPN DALLAS Hall of Fame - Tom Landry no longer top of mind". ESPN. 2010-01-02. Retrieved 2012-09-23. 
  12. ^ Campbell, Lisa D. (1994). Michael Jackson: The King of Pop's Darkest Hour. Branden Books. p. 34. ISBN 0-8283-2003-9.  Extract of page 34
  13. ^ Andersen, Christopher P. (1995). Michael Jackson: unauthorized. Pocket Books. ISBN 0-671-89240-1. 
  14. ^ http://www.bodyworlds.com/en/gunther_von_hagens/anatomist_hat.html
  15. ^ His hat rode on top of his coffin during his state funeral. http://www.gettyimages.com/detail/news-photo/fedora-hat-of-turkeys-ninth-president-and-former-prime-news-photo/477678250.

External links[edit]