How to find the perfect shape, fit and style


The cowboy hat is probably the most defining symbol of Western wear and cowboy culture.

While the funky shaped hat was originally created to protect cowboys from the elements, it has become a form of fashion.

From musicians to movie stars and everyone in between, more and more people wear the iconic cowboy symbol, even if they don’t straddle the open plains.

While many stores sell cowboy hats, finding the right size and shape is more complicated than just ripping a hat off the wall and putting it on your head.

Like fingerprints, cowboy hats are unique to the wearer.

Tim Costello, Retail Sales Manager at Greeley Hat Works, left, chats with two young customers about the different Straw Hat options. (Tamara Markard / journalist)

There are several factors to consider when purchasing a cowboy hat, such as the shape and height of the crown, the style of the brim, the type of material, the reason you will be wearing it – such as the work or events – and the price you’re willing to pay for your hat.

Cowboy hats come in a variety of materials including straw, fur felt, or leather. Hats have a sweatband on the inside and usually a small decorative headband on the outside of the crown.

A cowboy hat has two basic parts: the crown or the “top” of the hat and the brim, or bottom part that goes all the way around the hat.

Crowns can be of different sizes, from tall to shallower, while edges can be of different widths.

Both felt and straw hats can be shaped to whatever style the customer prefers.

Greeley Hat Works associate Maddie Rainford works with a client to fashion a hat on Monday June 28 at Greeley’s boutique. (Tamara Markard / journalist)

Finding the best style and shape for a cowboy hat will depend on your face shape: oval, round, long, square, heart, or diamond.

Lazy ranch clothes, a western clothing, footwear, and accessories store in Willow Park, Texas, has some tips for finding the right cowboy hat for your face shape.

If you have an oval-shaped face then you’ve hit the jackpot because just about any combination of crown and edge will work, the store’s website reports. They recommend leaving the crown open and lifting the edge slightly to create a big hollow in the front.

Men and women with round faces will want to go for a high crown and a slanted edge. A “brick” or “Canadian” pleat, shallow side vents, and a sharp square edge with a deeper hollow in the front will help counter the roundness of your face.

If you have a long, thin face, avoid hats with crowns that are too high or too high as both exaggerate your face length. A medium crown height with a ‘Cattlemans’ crease and tighter square edge is the best option for this face shape.

Square faces look best in rounded cowboy hats with curved edges. According to Lazy Ranch Wear, going for the “Cool Hand Luke” crease with shallow side slits and a slightly curved edge is the best option for square faces.

People with a heart-shaped face should lean towards a “winslow” or “teardrop” fold with a shorter brimmed hat. They should also leave the intake flat and ask for a medium to heavy dip up front.

The angular, diamond-shaped face tends to look best in hats with a “cutter” or “cattlemans” pleat and a more slanted brim with no indentation in the front.

Tim Costello, retail sales manager at Greeley Hat Works, works to fashion a straw cowboy hat for a customer Monday in Greeley’s store. (Tamara Markard / journalist)

“I show reining horses so the style of reining is a bit more relaxed and that’s definitely my style. ” Greeley hat works said partner Maddie Rainford. “I have a black, a chocolate, and a dark green all of the same shape.”

Here are some more tips for finding the perfect shape and fit:

  • Keep the width of the brim just outside your eyes.
  • The hollow in the front is a personal preference, with some people choosing a deeper hollow than others.

If you see a red mark on your forehead after trying on a hat, it may be too tight, advised Greeley hat works Retail Sales Manager Tim Costello.

“We have customers who want their hats to fit properly,” he explained. “This is where you have to ask them if they like their hat to be lower or higher on their head. A good rule of thumb is that the hat is in contact all around the head.

  • There are endless combinations and options for crafting a cowboy hat. (Tamara Markard / journalist)

  • Dress your cowboy hat with a beaded or leather headband. (Tamara Makard / journalist)

  • Straw hats are great for the summer months because they are lighter and cooler than felt or other types of materials used to make cowboy hats. (Tamara Markard / journalist)

  • A basic shapeless black hat hangs on the wall of the Greeley Hat Works showroom at 2613 8th Ave. (Tamara Markard / Staff Reporter)

  • Retail Sales Manager Tim Costello adds foam to tighten the fit of a hat for a customer of Greeley Hat Works on Monday, June 28. (Tamara Markard / Staff Reporter)

Don’t be afraid to go up a size. You can always add strips of foam to make it fit your head. Additionally, hats can shrink over time with sweat and moisture.

Don’t be afraid to try out different shapes and colors. What may not suit you in one color may look better in another.

Hats can also be reshaped after shaping them into a specific style.

“One of the benefits of buying a high quality hat is that we can reshape it over and over again,” Costello said. “I have clients who come once a month to have their hats remodeled. I had a client for whom I spent over an hour and a half studying different shapes.

Sometimes you might not know what shape you’re looking for until you see it, Costello added.

Sometimes the cheapest option isn’t always the best.

Cowboy hats come in a variety of colors, shapes and materials. From basic black to ruby ​​red, there are several options for making your mark with a cowboy hat. (Tamara Markard / journalist)

If you plan to wear a cowboy hat every day, paying for a good quality hat will definitely save you money in the long run.

“These hats lasted me 10 years of exposure,” said Emerson Lovato, 17, a customer of Greeley Hat Works and attendant at the Weld County Fair. “They’re very, very durable and they hold their shape well. I’d rather pay a big amount up front and not have to buy as often than having to buy a lot of cheaper hats. They’re quality.

A good quality cowboy hat will stand up to all kinds of weather conditions, Costello said. This is why they are expensive; they are created to last.

And while it is important to find the perfect fit and shape of the cowboy hat, there are also several labels for wearing the western hat, depending on Bernard hats.

Some of the rules for wearing the cowboy hat include:

  • Take off your hat every time you enter a building.
  • If you are on an informal occasion, you can put your hat back on, but for formal occasions the hat should be left off.
  • When you sit down at a table for a meal, your hat should come off.
  • When you are seated at a counter for a meal, you can leave your hat on.
  • Take off your hat during the National Anthem and Pledge of Allegiance.
  • When introduced to a woman, remove your hat with your left hand so you can shake her hand with your right hand.
Greeley Hat Works, 2613 8th Ave., making hats since 1909. (Tamara Markard / Staff Reporter)

As in the tradition of not wearing white after Labor Day, cowboy hats also have a season. Felt hats are typically worn between Labor Day and Remembrance Day, while straw hats are worn during the summer months.

“I would say fall through spring is traditionally a felt season and Straw Hats typically peak between Easter and August,” Costello said. “But we have customers who will be wearing their felt hats all year round. I wear mine all year round. It’s really up to the individual.

It doesn’t matter if you go for a straw hat, a felt hat, something to wear just for fashion or something to wear to work, a bright colored hat or a neutral colored hat, choosing a cowboy hat is personal experience.

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