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A traditional Ukrainian straw hat.
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.


Commonly used fibers are:[2]


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.


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.

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.

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]

Types of straw hatsEdit



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 alsoEdit


  1. ^ Hatatorium: An Essential Guide for Hat Collectors ISBN 978-0-984-78590-2 p. 18
  2. ^ a b A Dictionary of Costume and Fashion:, Mary Brooks Picken, Courier Corporation, 24.07.2013
  3. ^ "Types of Straws Used in Hat Making | Ultrafino". Ultrafino. 30 November 2017. Retrieved 7 December 2017. |first= missing |last= (help)
  4. ^ The Fairchild Encyclopedia of Menswear, Mary Lisa Gavenas, Fairchild Books, 2008, P. 327
  5. ^ The Chronicle of Hats in Enjoyable Quotes:, Ida Tomshinsky Xlibris Corporation, 20.05.2013, P. 28
  6. ^ Paglinastroh Retrieved 03.14.2016
  7. ^ Rush straw Retrieved 03-18-2016
  8. ^ Bulrush hat Retrieved 03-18-2016
  9. ^ Typha hat Retrieved 03-19-2016
  10. ^ Reed hat Retrieved 03-18-2016
  11. ^ Historical Common Names of Great Plains Plants Volume I: Historical Names , Elaine Nowick,, 01.10.2014, P. 355
  12. ^ Information for use in determining whether to continue designation of certain headwear of straw as articles eligible for duty-free treatment under the generalized system of preferences:, Jackie Worrell, United States International Trade Commission, 1982, P. 5
  13. ^ PP Straw Retrieved 03-16-2016
  14. ^ Hats and Headwear around the World: A Cultural Encyclopedia:, Beverly Chico, ABC-CLIO, 03.10.2013, P. 115, 259
  15. ^ Hatatorium: An Essential Guide for Hat Collectors, Brenda Grantland, P. 56
  16. ^ Chip straw Retrieved 03-16-2016
  17. ^ Our Economic World: A Study of the World's Natural Resources and Industries ISBN 978-0-412-57640-9 p. 302
  18. ^
  19. ^ "President Theodore Roosevelt's Legendary Panama Canal Fashion | Ultrafino". Ultrafino. 29 September 2017. Retrieved 7 December 2017. |first= missing |last= (help)
  20. ^ "The Hat Story". British Hat Guild. 2003. Archived from the original on 10 May 2012. Retrieved 14 March 2016.