You may remember my trusty, crusty, well worn and well loved old brown hat (mentioned previously here) :
snow man the kids an I built in the yard last Winter.
It's been a while since I wore this style of hat regularly, but lately I've been in the mood. I nabbed a really dressy black number not too long ago, and it got me thinking that it would be nice to have a proper hat that was less formal, one that would look equally well with a Barbour and jeans or a suit and overcoat. The search landed me at the Salmagundi Hat Shop in the Jamaica Plain area in Boston. They have quite a few nice hats, and one of any real quality will run a guy just shy of $100. I was willing to pay, but none of the hats really got me, mostly because all I really wanted was my old hat back. Turns out for $110, a price just $22 higher than the hat I nearly settled for, Salmagundi offers a complete overhaul service. So I grabbed my old brown hat, snapped a few quick photos of it in its ratty state, and headed (ha, "head"ed) over. About a month later, the hat was ready, and I invite you all to join me in welcoming my prodigal son back home. Let's kill the fatted calf.
A brand new grosgrain ribbon with an expertly pleated bow gives new life to this warhorse. The slightly darker brown color gives it a bit of a new feel, perhaps a bit more "city" and a bit less "Grapes of Wrath". By contrast, the fur felt is a few shades lighter, having shed its decades of grit, and once again has the soft fuzzy nap of a nice new hat. The original brim binding in tan grosgrain privides just the right touch of contrast.
These kind of hats may not be for every guy, but if you've got what it takes, check these guys out. Plenty here for the well appointed ladies as well. Better still, if you've got an old clunker of faded glory, hand it over for a new lease on life. It's worth every penny.
10 October 2011
Correction: Boyd's of Philadelphia is still running strong and considered to be a decent heberdashery.