Straw hat

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A traditional Ukrainian straw hat. Ukrayins'kii bril'.JPG
A traditional Ukrainian straw hat.
A Straw hat worn by a Japanese buddhist monk Japanese buddhist monk hat by Arashiyama cut.jpg
A Straw hat worn by a 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. [1] 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.

Hat Shaped head covering, having a brim and a crown, or one of these

A hat is a head covering which is worn for various reasons, including protection against weather conditions, ceremonial reasons such as university graduation, religious reasons, safety, or as a fashion accessory. In the past, hats were an indicator of social status. In the military, hats may denote nationality, branch of service, rank or regiment. Police typically wear distinctive hats such as peaked caps or brimmed hats, such as those worn by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Some hats have a protective function. As examples, the hard hat protects construction workers' heads from injury by falling objects and a British police Custodian helmet protects the officer's head, a sun hat shades the face and shoulders from the sun, a cowboy hat protects against sun and rain and an ushanka fur hat with fold-down earflaps keeps the head and ears warm. Some hats are worn for ceremonial purposes, such as the mortarboard, which is worn during university graduation ceremonies. Some hats are worn by members of a certain profession, such as the Toque worn by chefs. Some hats have religious functions, such as the mitres worn by Bishops and the turban worn by Sikhs.

Basket weaving the weaving of pliable materials

Basket weaving is the process of weaving or sewing pliable materials into two- or three dimensional artifacts, such as mats or containers. Craftspeople and artists specialized in making baskets are usually referred to as basket makers and basket weavers.

Straw agricultural byproduct of cereal crops

Straw is an agricultural byproduct consisting of the dry stalks of cereal plants after the grain and chaff have been removed. It makes up about half of the yield of cereal crops such as barley, oats, rice, rye and wheat. It has a number of different uses, including fuel, livestock bedding and fodder, thatching and basket making.



Commonly used fibers are: [2]

Tuscany Region of Italy

Tuscany is a region in central Italy with an area of about 23,000 square kilometres and a population of about 3.8 million inhabitants (2013). The regional capital is Florence (Firenze).

Livorno Comune in Tuscany, Italy

Livorno is a port city on the Ligurian Sea on the western coast of Tuscany, Italy. It is the capital of the Province of Livorno, having a population of 158,493 residents in December 2017. It was formerly known in English as Leghorn.

Belarus country in Eastern Europe

Belarus, officially the Republic of Belarus, formerly known by its Russian name Byelorussia or Belorussia, is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe bordered by Russia to the northeast, Ukraine to the south, Poland to the west, and Lithuania and Latvia to the northwest. Its capital and most populous city is Minsk. Over 40% of its 207,600 square kilometres (80,200 sq mi) is forested. Its major economic sectors are service industries and manufacturing. Until the 20th century, different states at various times controlled the lands of modern-day Belarus, including the Principality of Polotsk, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, and the Russian Empire.


There are several styles of straw hats, but all of them are woven using some form of plant fibre. [17] [18] 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.

Fiber crop plants grown for fiber

Fiber crops are field crops grown for their fibers, which are traditionally used to make paper, cloth, or rope. They are organized into 3 main groups—textile fibers, cordage fibers, and filling fibers. They are a type of natural fiber.

Felt type of textile made from matted fibres

Felt is a textile material that is produced by matting, condensing and pressing fibers together. Felt can be made of natural fibers such as wool or animal fur, or from synthetic fibers such as petroleum-based acrylic or acrylonitrile or wood pulp-based rayon. Blended fibers are also common.

Steam water in the gas phase, which is formed when water boils. Steam is invisible; however, "steam" often refers to wet steam, the visible mist or aerosol of water droplets formed as this water vapour condenses

Steam is water in the gas phase, which is formed when water boils or evaporates. Steam is invisible; however, "steam" often refers to wet steam, the visible mist or aerosol of water droplets formed as this water vapour condenses. At lower pressures, such as in the upper atmosphere or at the top of high mountains, water boils at a lower temperature than the nominal 100 °C (212 °F) at standard pressure. If heated further it becomes superheated steam.


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.

Middle Ages Period of European history from the 5th to the 15th century

In the history of Europe, the Middle Ages lasted from the 5th to the 15th century. It began with the fall of the Western Roman Empire and merged into the Renaissance and the Age of Discovery. The Middle Ages is the middle period of the three traditional divisions of Western history: classical antiquity, the medieval period, and the modern period. The medieval period is itself subdivided into the Early, High, and Late Middle Ages.

Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry illuminated manuscript book of hours

The Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry or Très Riches Heures,, is the most famous and possibly the best surviving example of French Gothic manuscript illumination, showing the late International Gothic phase of the style. It is a book of hours: a collection of prayers to be said at the canonical hours. It was created between c. 1412 and 1416 for the extravagant royal bibliophile and patron John, Duke of Berry, by the Limbourg brothers. When the three painters and their sponsor died in 1416, possibly victims of plague, the manuscript was left unfinished. It was further embellished in the 1440s by an anonymous painter, who many art historians believe was Barthélemy d'Eyck. In 1485–1489, it was brought to its present state by the painter Jean Colombe on behalf of the Duke of Savoy. Acquired by the Duc d'Aumale in 1856, the book is now MS 65 in the Musée Condé, Chantilly, France.

Lesothoan license plate, featuring a mokorotlo License plate of Lesotho.jpg
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.

Mokorotlo straw hat widely used for traditional Sotho clothing

A mokorotlo is a type of straw hat widely used for traditional Sotho clothing, and is the national symbol of Lesotho. An image of the Mokorotlo appears on the Lesotho flag, and on Lesotho license plates. The design is believed to have been inspired by the conical mountain Mount Qiloane. It is known as “modianyewe”, which means "he who executes judgement in court" in Sesotho. It is manufactured from an indigenous grass known as “mosea” or “lehodi”.

Lesotho kingdom in southern Africa

Lesotho, officially the Kingdom of Lesotho, is an enclaved country within the border of South Africa. It is one of only three independent states completely surrounded by the territory of another country, and the only one outside of the Italian peninsula. Lesotho is just over 30,000 km2 (11,583 sq mi) in size and has a population of around 2 million. Its capital and largest city is Maseru.

Lesotho requires its residents to register their motor vehicles and display vehicle registration plates.

President Theodore Roosevelt helped popularize the straw Panama hat during his visit to the Panama Canal. Roosevelt used his natural ability to drum up publicity by posing for a series of photos at the Panama Canal construction site in 1906. Photos of his visit showed a strong, rugged leader dressed crisply in light-colored suits and stylish straw fedoras. [19]

Theodore Roosevelt 26th president of the United States

Theodore Roosevelt Jr. was an American statesman, politician, conservationist, naturalist, and writer who served as the 26th president of the United States from 1901 to 1909. He served as the 25th vice president from March to September 1901 and as the 33rd governor of New York from 1899 to 1900. As a leader of the Republican Party, he became a driving force for the Progressive Era in the United States in the early 20th century. His face is depicted on Mount Rushmore alongside George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln. He is generally ranked in polls of historians and political scientists as one of the five best presidents.

Panama Canal Large artificial waterway in the Republic of Panama, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans

The Panama Canal is an artificial 82 km (51 mi) waterway in Panama that connects the Atlantic Ocean with the Pacific Ocean. The canal cuts across the Isthmus of Panama and is a conduit for maritime trade. Canal locks are at each end to lift ships up to Gatun Lake, an artificial lake created to reduce the amount of excavation work required for the canal, 26 m (85 ft) above sea level, and then lower the ships at the other end. The original locks are 34 m (110 ft) wide. A third, wider lane of locks was constructed between September 2007 and May 2016. The expanded canal began commercial operation on June 26, 2016. The new locks allow transit of larger, neo-Panamax ships, capable of handling more cargo.

Types of straw 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. [20]

See also

Related Research Articles

Panama hat Panamá hat

A Panama hat, also known as an Ecuadorian hat or a toquilla straw hat, is a traditional brimmed straw hat of Ecuadorian origin. Traditionally, hats were made from the plaited leaves of the Carludovica palmata plant, known locally as the toquilla palm or jipijapa palm, although it is a palm-like plant rather than a true palm.

Boater straw hat with a straight brim, flat crown and ribbon hatband

A boater is a semi-formal summer hat for men, which was popularised in the late 19th century and early 20th century.

Fedora wide brimmed felt hat with a pinched crown

A fedora is a hat with a soft brim and indented crown. It is typically creased lengthwise down the crown and "pinched" near the front on both sides. 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).

Trilby Type of hat

A trilby is a narrow-brimmed type of hat. The trilby was once viewed as the rich man's favored hat; it is sometimes called the "brown trilby" in Britain and was frequently seen at the horse races.

Bonnet (headgear) headwear usually tied under the chin and having a front brim

Bonnet has been used as the name for a wide variety of headgear for both sexes—more often female—from the Middle Ages to the present. As with "hat" and "cap", it is impossible to generalize as to the styles for which the word has been used, but there is for both sexes a tendency to use the word for styles in soft material and lacking a brim, or at least one all the way round, rather than just at the front. Yet the term has also been used, for example, for steel helmets. This was from Scotland, where the term has long been especially popular.

Sombrero type of wide-brimmed hat in, and associated with, Mexico

Sombrero in English refers to a type of wide-brimmed hat from Mexico, used to shield from the sun. It usually has a high pointed crown, an extra-wide brim that's slightly upturned at the edge, and a chin string to hold it in place. In Spanish, sombrero refers to any wide-brimmed hat; in Mexico the hat is called Sombrero de charro.

Raffia palm genus of plants

Raffia palms (Raphia) are a genus of about twenty species of palms native to tropical regions of Africa, and especially Madagascar, with one species also occurring in Central and South America. R. taedigera is the source of raffia fibers, which are the veins of the leaves, and this species produces a fruit called "brazilia pods", "uxi nuts" or "uxi pods".

<i>Corypha</i> genus of plants

Corypha is a genus of palms, native to India, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, New Guinea and northeastern Australia. They are fan palms, and the leaves have a long petiole terminating in a rounded fan of numerous leaflets.

<i>Kasa</i> (hat) any of several traditional Japanese hats

A kasa (笠) is a term used for any one of several traditional Japanese hats. These include amigasa and jingasa.

Cloche hat close-fitting hats with a bell-shaped crown

The cloche hat or simply cloche is a fitted, bell-shaped hat for women that was invented in 1908 by milliner Caroline Reboux. They were especially popular from about 1922 to 1933. Its name is derived from cloche, the French word for "bell".

Romanian dress refers to the traditional clothing worn by Romanians, who live primarily in Romania and Moldova, with smaller communities in Ukraine and Serbia. Today, the vast majority of Romanians wear modern style dress on most occasions, and the garments described here largely fell out of use during the 20th century. However, they can still be seen in more remote areas, on special occasions, and at ethnographic and folk events. Each historical region has its own specific variety of costume.

Bergère hat straw hat with a low crown and wide, flat brim

A bergère hat is a flat-brimmed straw hat with a shallow crown, usually trimmed with ribbon and flowers. It could be worn in various ways with the brim folded back or turned up or down at whim. It is also sometimes called a milkmaid hat. It was widely worn in the mid-18th century, and versions may be seen in many British and French paintings of the period, such as The Swing by Fragonard, and in portraits by Thomas Gainsborough and Johann Zoffany, amongst others. It has been suggested that the hat was named after Madame Bergeret, who is holding a shepherdess-style hat in a Boucher portrait painted c.1766.

Cabbage-tree hat

A cabbage tree hat is a hat made from the leaves of the Livistona australis, also known as the cabbage-tree palm. It is known as the first distinctively Australian headwear in use. Seeking protection from the sun, early European settlers started to make hats using fibre from the native palm, which soon became popular throughout the colonies. The process involved boiling, then drying, and finally bleaching the leaves. The Powerhouse Museum describes a cabbage-tree hat thus: "Finely woven natural straw coloured hat; high tapering domed crown, wide flat brim; applied layered hat band of coarser plaiting with zig-zag border edges."

Kongo textiles

In the Kongo Kingdom, the woven arts were emblematic of kingship and nobility. The coarse filament stripped from the fronds of the raffia palm tree served as the foundation of the Kongo weaving arts. This material imposed constraints that were overcome to produce varied and ingenious textile formats and structures.

Picture hat large, wide-brimmed hat of lightweight material, trimmed with flowers, ribbons or plumes, worn for race meetings, garden parties, and other outdoor daytime events

A picture hat, also sometimes known as a Gainsborough hat, is an elaborate woman's hat with a wide brim. It has been suggested that the name may be derived from the way the broad brim frames the face to create a "picture".

Sailor hat

A sailor hat is a brimmed straw hat similar to those historically worn by nineteenth century sailors before the sailor cap became standard. It is very close in appearance to the masculine boater, although "sailors" as worn by women and children have their own distinct design, typically flat-crowned, wide-brimmed and with a dark ribbon band extending into streamers hanging off the brim. Such hats could also be made in felt as an alternative to straw.

Mushroom hat womans hat with a small, dome-shaped crown and down-turned brim

A mushroom hat is a millinery style in which the brim of the hat tilts downwards, resembling the shape of a mushroom. It is a style that first emerged in the 1870s and 1880s, when it was usually made of straw. It became fashionable again from around 1907 to the late 1920s; these versions featured a distinctly downturned brim although the size and shape of the crown varied according to prevailing fashions.


The madhalla is a traditional hat used in Yemen worn by women. The hats have a wide circular brim and a peaked top. The straw hats are peaked to keep the wearer cool in hot temperatures. Being almost two feet tall, the design promotes air circulation within the hat. They have been noted to resemble witch hats. It is made from plaited strips of date palm leaves. They are often worn in Hadhramaut by female herders and field workers who also wear black abayas. The hat can be obtained at some souqs.


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  16. Chip straw Retrieved 03-16-2016
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