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What exactly is a Panama Hat?
They are hand-woven hats that were made popular in the mid-nineteenth century and given the name of “Panama Hats” thanks to US President Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt visited Panama in 1904 and was photographed wearing this unique hat, people came to know this look and style as a Panama Hat.
How is it made?
Each hat is hand-woven from toquilla straw, the entire process taking from 5 to 15 days to complete, depending on the size of the hat and its quality. After the weaving process is complete the hat is placed in different molds to create the various styles and shapes the designer wants to achieve. When the final stages of the weaving process are completed, the hat gets washed, whitened or dyed, dried in the sun before reshaping. Reshaping yields the desired style, from there the hat has its final accessories sewn on to complete the one of a kind piece of art. A final quality inspection is completed then the seal of approval and tag gets attached!
Each hat is unique, you can find the same model but the hat pattern itself is always one of the kind thanks to individual hand weaving techniques!