Cowboy Hat Styles – Straight From The Horse’s Mouth

Western Hats and Cowboy Hats from Hartford York Hats - Toby Keith Western Hat - The Toby Keith MultiIn his article Cowboy Hats Shape The Rodeo Performer, journalist Steve Ranson explores the preferences for cowboy hat styles at this week’s Silver State International Rodeo.

Findings include:

1. Depends where you live. “In Nevada, you’ll see more buckaroo hats with flat rims and flat tops,” said Bud Openshaw, owner of Openshaw Saddlery, who can reshape and fix hats in less than one hour. “Go to Arizona and you’ll find the big brim with sides tipped up.”

2. Depends what you do. “I can tell a rodeo cowboy by the shape of his hat,” Openshaw said, explaining how many performers prefer the cattleman’s crease on top.

3. Depends on your personality. “The way cowboys and cowgirls wear their hats usually indicates their personalities. Some may wear the hat on the back of their head or to the side or tipped in front toward their eyes. Cowboys will shape their hats to their personality. Even if a cowboy has 20 hats, Openshaw said each hat will be similar.”

Although the split between wearing straw or felt hats is pretty much even at 50/50, wearing one is a given, especially with sunny days and triple-digit temperatures.

“The brim keeps cowboys protected from the sun. They’ll be working all day, and there’s no place for them to get away,” he said. “This is the cowboy’s awning, the protection from the elements.”

Get ’em, cowboy.

Thanks for reading,
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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10 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. looking for name of hat style, i believe it is like the old cutting horse style with dimples in center on each side?

  2. Don’t know for sure, but it’s probably a cattleman’s.

  3. I’m trying to find a hat of the style worn by James Garner in Maverick and Pete Duel in Alias Smith & Jones. Can you tell me what that style is called?

    • Am working on it.

      • Any progress on the Maverick/Alias Smith and Jones style hat?

      • Sorry, I’m coming up empty on that one….

  4. What are the hats called with the straight front like jason aldean’s

  5. John,

    I am looking for a traditional “Smokey Yunick” style, preferably in a lighter color. Any suggestions?

    • Gee, I really don’t have any idea on that. Right now, I’m on the road a lot, though, getting the fall/winter styles in and I’ll certainly let you know if I find anything.

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