A Hat Cleaning Story


Throughout my years making and cleaning hats I have discovered that every hat be it new or old, they all have a story. These stories are either just beginning or are spanning over years and even generations.

This hat is one of those hats. This hat is the favorite hat of a 86 year old gentleman. When his grandson was young he gave him this western hat. Yes that’s right western hat. It may not look like it now but it once was a western hat. The gentleman liked the hat but he was looking for a different hat. The gentleman wanted a fedora. At some point his grandson obliged and had some work done on the hat. He the brim cut to a 2 ¾ inch length and shaped like a open road and he had the crown reshaped into a modified V/C shape.

When I got this hat, as you can see in the photo above, it was a mess. It had about 30 years of character worn into it. The grandson contacted me and asked if I could breath some new live into the hat. I naturally responded with a yes. I went to the gentleman’s house and assessed the hat. I told him that I could and would bring the hat to like new.

Every time I clean a hat I can feel the history of it. Its like the hat is speaking to me and asking me to make it what it wants to be. This hat was no exception. This hat spoke to me and told me it wanted to be a like new fancy fedora and that it wanted a red feather. Call me crazy but they do speak to me.

As you look at the photo you will see a hat that was originally a silver belly Stetson that was dirty, sweaty and run down over the years. The hat may look like two different colors but it is not. The dirty hat was just that dirty. As I was cleaning the hat I could see it starting to transform into the hat it wanted to be.

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