Hat Assumptions

Men's Summer Hats from Hartford York Hats - Men's Henschel Woven Toyo Summer Hat - The Downer High RollerI’m paraphrasing that brilliant cartoonist, Charles M. Schulz, here when I say:

Wear a hat. It gives the illusion that your life is more interesting than it really is.

Hats do catch the eye, they draw attention. You are noticed when you wear a hat. People don’t just look at you when you wear a hat–they also assume things about you: that you’re very self-confident, a go-getter; that you have fashion savvy; that you’re unafraid.

These attributes are all good, all positive. And when you’re continually attributed with attractive characteristics by strangers and friends alike, it’s not much of a stretch to assume those qualities are indeed within you — even if you’re the last to recognize or acknowledge them.

Thanks for reading,
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Excuse Me, But Is Your Hat Twisted?

Borsalino Caps from Hartford York Hats - Men's Borsalino Wool Newsboy Cap - The Super MarioMen wear suits all year long, and not all opt for the more casual look of linen–no matter the season. Same with hats–some guys just prefer wool to straw or linen.

But in summer?

If wearing wool in summer confuses the heck out of you, you’re not alone. The site that promotes higher education (SoYouWanna.com) has an article all about types of fabrics used for suits; the pros and cons of non-wools vs wools; how to choose a wool appropriate for summer wear etc., and I’ve taken careful notes.

[Worsted wools] will be your gabardines or mid-weight corded wools. They are durable, hard-wearing, and usually fine for year-round wear. They can be a little lighter or heavier, depending on the weave, but consider them the mid-weights. Ask for them by name.

You might come across a suit that is advertised as a “high-twist,” 100, or Super 110. These are not car races. This just means that the suit is made of a worsted wool yarn that has been twisted more often than the usual 60-80 twist fabrics. This makes it a finer cloth of a somewhat lighter weight. Such suits would be perfectly fine, therefore, for spring, summer, and fall, but might not carry you through the winter. In this case, we urge you to consider the local climate when making purchasing decisions.

The mid-weights are best overall, especially with the usual “air-conditioned-car-ride-into-the-air-conditioned-office” venture that most people have in summer. And if you will be visiting a lot of clients or doing hefty traveling, you will need this kind of durable fabric which will stand up to the extra wear, but not be too hot.

So, if the wool is extremely fine (whatever the garment), you’re good to go and you’ll stay cool doing it.

Thanks for reading,
The Very Woolly Steve Singer
(also CEO Hartford York)

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Published in: on May 30, 2007 at 12:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

Your New Hat – Your Next Great Adventure

Womens Sun Hats from Hartford York Hats - Kaminski Raffia Straw Hat - The MelindaI’m really looking forward to reading the final installment of the Harry Potter series – I started reading J.K. Rowling’s fantasy books as a favor to some neighborhood tykes and am now caught up in the characters enough to see this thing through.

Although she wrote the books for children, Rowling kept thoughts and adventures mature enough to be interesting to older people as well. For instance, a line I liked from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone reads: To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.

Replace the word “death” with “each new hat”, and that statement becomes pure magic to my ears: Each new hat is but the next great adventure.

Thanks for reading,
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Flattering Hats Are The Bee’s Knees!

Summer Hats from Hartford York Hats - Men's Linen Walking Hat - The Christys' HaywardBritish designer, Mary Quant, once said:

The fashionable woman wears clothes. The clothes don’t wear her.

I think the same applies for men too. If you see a young well-dressed fella looking highly self-conscious, it’s likely that he’s not used to dressing in that manner. Hats are an accessory that can make a lot of people uncomfortable – but it usually only happens to those who have not yet become confident in their sense of style.

Like anything else, we grow into fashion confidence as we age. Not only do we know what feels good, we also know what looks good, what flatters and enhances.

Ms. Quant had something to say about age too. To wit: A woman is as young as her knees.

*ouch*

Thanks for reading,
Steve (Smooth Knees) Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Published in: on May 29, 2007 at 12:06 am  Leave a Comment  

It’s Memorial Day Weekend! Hold On To Your Hat

Fedoras from Hartford York Hats - Men's Makins Ramie Summer Fedora Hat - The Caramel FedoraWhat does Memorial Day mean to you? The start of summer; the high travel season; the first weekend of picnics, beach parties and cottage country traffic jams?

It’s all of that, of course – and it’s also a time when people struggle into warm weather clothes including last year’s shorts and bathing suits. Listen for the familiar cry this weekend, as you sail far from the madding crowd: “It happened again! All my clothes from last year shrank!”

You know, shrinkage is one reason why I got into the hat business in the first place. My hat fits no matter what else changes size. I can depend on my hat, you know? Sort of like the unconditional love a dog has for its master.

(Except hats don’t drool.)

Drive carefully.

Thanks for reading,
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Published in: on May 24, 2007 at 11:34 pm  Leave a Comment  

Fashionably Hot in Your Hat — Even After 50

Summer Hats, Jeans, and Shirts from Hartford York Hats - Look Good At Every AgeYou’re not your grandfather, but you’re not 25 anymore, either (thank goodness!).

For middle-age fashion, Sharon Haver at Focus on Style counsels that style has nothing to do with numbers (designers think of style, not your date of birth): it’s all about the shape you’re in and the attitude you wear more than just the outfit. In other words,

Think of other men hovering on one side or the other of the cusp of 50: Tom Hanks, Andy Garcia, Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton, Kevin Costner, Dennis Leary, and Billy Idol. Bet you still think of these guys as looking pretty vital. They are also pretty true to their own style.

In a nutshell, go for streamlined quality and be unafraid. This really is the time of your life!

Thanks for reading,
The Ever Youthful
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Published in: on May 22, 2007 at 2:38 pm  Leave a Comment  

Hats With 2 or 3 Inch Brims For Best Protection

Cotton Canvas Summer Hats from Hartford York - Men's Equator Canvas Expedition Hat - The SaharaI read in an article called May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month that

a hat with at least a 2 to 3 inch brim all around is ideal [for sun protection] because it protects areas often exposed to the sun, such as the neck, ears, eyes, forehead, nose and scalp. A shade cap, which looks like a baseball cap with about 7 inches of fabric draping down the sides and back, also is good.

A baseball cap can protect the front and top of the head but not the back of the neck or the ears where skin cancers commonly develop.

I knew all of that, of course, except for May being Skin Cancer Awareness Month. I thought that might be at the height of summer–July or August, when kids are out of school and everyone’s running around on vacation.

Anyway, it’s good advice, and I can add to it by telling you that I wear my shade hat (and sunglasses) at night.

Thanks for reading,
Stumblin’ Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

If you enjoyed this post in the shade, then you deserve free updates of this blog by email or RSS.

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Make Money Wearing Your Hat

Baseball caps from Hartford York Hats - Kangol Knit Baseball Cap - The Ventair Space CapIn 1984, a Canadian farmer began renting advertising space on his cows. It wasn’t long after that baseball caps with corporate logos and ads began cropping up on millions of heads all over North America. People weren’t paid to wear pictures of beer cans on their pates, but initially most hats were given out for free.

Nowadays, people shell out big bucks for the privilege of owing certain emblems on their hats and, with the exception of some hardcore hold-outs, the John Deere caps have ceased to cover at least most rural landscapes.

Still, somewhere in Canada, there’s a rich farmer with a flock of very strange looking cows. And you can bet he’s wearing a ball cap devoid of everything but style.

Thanks for reading,
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Published in: on May 17, 2007 at 1:35 am  Leave a Comment  

Does A Ten Gallon Cowboy Hat Really Hold That Much?

Cowboy Hats from Hartford York Hats - Toby Keith Toyo Western - The Toby Keith Two-Tone

I finally got the straight dope on this insomnia-causing question, from none other than. . ., well The StraightDope.com website.

SD staffer JillGat offers la pura verdad:

“Ten-gallon hat” is the result of a linguistic mix-up. “Galon” is the Spanish word for “braid.” Some vaqueros wore as many as ten braided hatbands on their sombreros, and those were called “ten galon hats.” English speakers heard gallon. Real cowboy hats came to Texas from the Spanish via Mexico (unless you want to go all the way back to Genghis Khan and the Mongolian horsemen, who apparently wore something similar).

And no, ten-gallon hats don’t hold ten gallons of water.

Trust me.

Thanks for reading,
Steve (Soggy) Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Published in: on May 14, 2007 at 6:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

A Whole Lotta Hats In New Orleans

Straw Hats from Hartford York - Men's Biltmore Porkpie - The MilanI get the Hat Life e-newsletter (free subscription, by the way) and was happy to read an AP article there called Hatter Sells a Thousand Hats. It seems that a long-time hat retailer (who’s been selling hats in the city since 1979) more than doubled her average sales of hats on the first day of this year’s New Orleans Jazz Festival.

Hatter Lynn LeBeaud attributes some of the interest in hats to people wanting to replace hats lost in Katrina. Others just wanted a new one or were looking for a reprieve from the blazing sun.

Whatever the reason, it’s nice to see that the $9.6 billion music industry in pre-Katrina New Orleans–along with the hat business, of course!–is coming back strong.

Thanks for reading,
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Published in: on May 9, 2007 at 9:07 pm  Leave a Comment