Straw hat

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For the 1974 Soviet film, see The Straw Hat. For the main character from One Piece, see Monkey D. Luffy.
A traditional Ukrainian straw hat.
Straw hat worn by Japanese buddhist monk

A straw hat is a brimmed hat that is woven out of straw or straw like materials from different plants or synthetics. The hat is designed to protect the head from the sun and against heatstroke, but straw hats are also used in fashion as a decorative element or a uniform.


The most commonly used types are:[1]


There are several styles of straw hats, but all of them are woven using some form of plant fibre. Many of these hats are formed in a similar way to felt hats; they are softened by steam or by submersion in hot water, and then formed by hand or over a hat block. Finer and more expensive straw hats have a tighter and more consistent weave. Since it takes much more time to weave a larger hat than a smaller one, larger hats are more expensive.

In 1914, Baltimore, Maryland was the leading manufacturer of straw hats in the US, "in both the quality and factory value."[15]


Straw hats have been worn in Europe and Asia since after the Middle Ages during the summer months, and have changed little between the medieval times and today. Many are to be seen in the famous calendar miniatures of the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, worn by all classes,but mostly by men.

Lesothoan license plate, featuring a mokorotlo

The mokorotlo, a local design of a straw hat, is the national symbol of the Basotho and Lesotho peoples, and of the nation of Lesotho. It is also displayed on the license plates of that country.

Types of straw hats[edit]

Straw hats are commonly blocked into shapes found in felt hats.



Artwork produced during the Middle Ages shows, among the more fashionably dressed, possibly the most spectacular straw hats ever seen on men in the West, notably those worn in the Arnolfini Portrait of 1434 by Jan van Eyck (tall, stained black) and by Saint George in a painting by Pisanello of around the same date (left). In the middle of the 18th century, it was fashionable for rich ladies to dress as country girls with a low crowned and wide brimmed straw hat to complete the look.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b A Dictionary of Costume and Fashion:, Mary Brooks Picken, Courier Corporation, 24.07.2013
  2. ^ The Fairchild Encyclopedia of Menswear, Mary Lisa Gavenas, Fairchild Books, 2008, P. 327
  3. ^ The Chronicle of Hats in Enjoyable Quotes:, Ida Tomshinsky Xlibris Corporation, 20.05.2013, P. 28
  4. ^ Paglinastroh Retrieved 03.14.2016
  5. ^ Rush straw Retrieved 03-18-2016
  6. ^ Bulrush hat Retrieved 03-18-2016
  7. ^ Typha hat Retrieved 03-19-2016
  8. ^ Reed hat Retrieved 03-18-2016
  9. ^ Historical Common Names of Great Plains Plants Volume I: Historical Names , Elaine Nowick,, 01.10.2014, P. 355
  10. ^ Information for use in determining whether to continue designation of certain headwear of straw as articles eligible for duty-free treatment under the generalized system of preferences:, Jackie Worrell, United States International Trade Commission, 1982, P. 5
  11. ^ PP Straw Retrieved 03-16-2016
  12. ^ Hats and Headwear around the World: A Cultural Encyclopedia:, Beverly Chico, ABC-CLIO, 03.10.2013, P. 115, 259
  13. ^ Hatatorium: An Essential Guide for Hat Collectors, Brenda Grantland, P. 56
  14. ^ Chip straw Retrieved 03-16-2016
  15. ^ Walsh, Richard; William Lloyd Fox (1974). Maryland--a history, 1632-1974. Baltimore: Maryland Historical Society. p. 425. OCLC 1217352. 
  16. ^ "The Hat Story". British Hat Guild. 2003. Archived from the original on 10 May 2012. Retrieved 2016-03-14.