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Glossary of Terms

8-QUARTER CAP: Classic heritage baggy cap, rounder than the contour 8 panel cap, with a button and the feeling of the Dockman cap, only closer-fitted to the head. Often designed with a fillet in the back, which truly helps create a deeper, snugger fit, resulting in a slight exaggeration of the slouch.

ARMY CAP: Close fitting shape, usually with a short rounded peak in front, an alternative to a baseball cap, inspired by military uniforms throughout the 1900’s. One of the many types of hats for men that women enjoy wearing, too.

ASCOT: Round formed cap, made from one piece of material, generally not lined inside, with a small bill that gives it a rounded shape. Resembles a flat cap.

ASYMMETRICAL CLOCHE: Cloche style shape with a round crown and an asymmetrical brim, made famous during the 1920’s.

BALACLAVA: Close fitting garment covering the whole head and neck, except parts of the face. Typically made of wool.

BASEBALL CAP: Fabric cap worn by baseball players, with a large brim and often with an adjustable strap at the back of the cap. One of the most versatile of all types of hats.

BEANIE: Small, round skull-cap, well fitted and made from many fabrics, often from wool.

BELLBOY: Small, stiff cap often in a pillbox shape, sometimes with button trim, or a chin strap, originally worn by hotel bellhops.

BERET: Round flat crown cap, with a short brim or no brim, often made from wool but also made from other fabrics, first popular in the 20th century in England by Kangol®. 

BOATER: A hat term defined by its origin. Flat top hardened hat with a flat crown and brim, first worn by children in the 19th century and now worn by men, women and children the world over.

BOONIE HAT: Soft wide brimmed hat also known as a bush hat, worn by people working rurally.

BOWLER: Hard hat with a round-shaped crown and a rolled brim, first used by horseback riders, and today associated with equestrian sports.

CAP: Tight fitting, often with a partial brim or no brim at all, including the Ivy Cap, Dockman, Baseball Cap, 8-panel Cap, and others.

CATTLEMAN CROWN: Tall crown, wide brim hat first designed for cowboys and made famous in rodeos, made primarily from straw, Shantung paper or wool.

CHADOR: Made from fabric, head wrap used by Moslem women, often out of black fabric.

CHAPEAU: Hat with a crown and a brim. Originally from the French word for hat, this hat term is universally known for headwear.

CHAPEL CAP: Small piece of lace or other soft fabric used to cover part of a woman’s head, used by religious women when entering a place of worship, especially services in the Catholic Church.

CLOCHE: Close fitting bell-shaped hat, commonly made from fabric, wool felt or straw, with a round crown and short brim, often unturned. Made popular during the 1920’s, named from the French word for bell.

COOLIE HAT: Straw or fabric hat with a tallish crown and shorter brim, originally worn by Chinese farmers and worn by outdoor enthusiasts beginning in the 1980’s.

CONTOUR CAP: Made from a total of five panels, with a single front panel, three smaller panels on the back and one panel on the side. Shape is similar to the Ivy Cap, but with a more fitted crown, flatter on top, with a brim slightly exposed with a slight overlap.

COSSACK: Made from cold-weather materials such as fur or faux fur, winter hat with a full crown, named after Russian Cossacks.

COWBOY HAT: Tall crown wide brim outdoor hat, often with a rolled edge, originally worn by cowboys herding cattle, but later fashionable in Westernwear. Among the most popular types of hats for men in America. 

DERBY: Stiff, round crown with a short rolled brim, first made famous in the 19th century in England by the 12th Earl of Derby.

DOCKMAN CAP: 6 panel cap with a rounded shape, oversized cut. The cap’s bill can only be slightly seen from the front leaving it only semi-visible. A more streamlined version of the traditional baggy paneled cap.

ELITE FINISH®: A very special finish, proprietary to the Bollman Hat Company, that starts with 16 micron sheeps wool, twice the carding action, and wet felting, which brings this luxury wool to life. A special brim and crown sanding is performed, and can be stiffened using an added hand cooked shellac which provides stiffness.

FASCINATOR: Often attached with a comb or hair clip, headpiece often made from fabric, wool or other soft material, including flowers, beads, lace or buttons. Among the hat terms most commonly heard in the UK. 

FEDORA: Pinched front hat with any size brim, made from straw, wool or fabric, worn by both men and women, first made and worn in France.

FLAT CAP: Snug fitting with or without a brim, made famous in England and now available in many different unique styles and materials.

FUR FELT HAT: Made from a blend of wool and fur, sometimes mixed with natural or synthetic fibers through the action of heat, moisture, chemicals and pressure.

FURGORA HAT: Very soft close-fitting from an angora wool blend, made famous in the 21st century by Kangol®

GAUCHO: Wide brimmed western hat made from wool, straw or fabric, trimmed with a chinstrap, named after “Gauchos”, the name given to the men who worked on cattle farms and who rode the Pampa, which is the term used to describe the plains of Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil.

HERRINGBONE: Fabric arranged or designed with columns of short parallel lines with all the lines in one column sloping one way and the lines in the other column sloping the other way, resembling the bones in a fish. Often used in the making of hats and caps.

HOMBURG: Semi-formal hat often made from stiff wool felt with a single dent running down the center of the crown and a pencil-curl brim, trimmed with a gros-grain hat band. Originated in Homburg Germany but quickly adopted by British royalty in the early 20th century. Very popular during the 2nd world war and post-war England and the United States. Worn by Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Anthony Eden, as well as US President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

IVY CAP: Constructed with three distinct panels, the cap’s front has a wide cut which gives it an intentionally slouched look and slim profile. On some styles the side panels are split in two, a wonderful way to highlight unique fabrics. Among the most enduring of all types of hats, the cap’s front has a sleeker look, especially well-suited for those with an elongated face.

LANOLUX®: 100% virgin wool with a sueded finish that gives a luxurious suede like feel. Superior wool fibers are delicately sanded and finished to provide a fine soft sueded hand, with excellent shape retention and durability, proprietary of the Bollman Hat Company.

LIEUTENANT HAT: Unstructured cap with a bill, made famous as a military cap.

LITEFELT®: Unstiffened wool felt treated with a patented process from the Bollman Hat Company, with water repellent, shape retentive, and stain resistant features and a luxury feel.

LITESTRAW®: A finish that is durable, flexible, and water repellent, transforming traditionally hard straw headwear and softening it to create a supple casual hat.

LONG PINCH FRONT CROWN: Pinched front hat with a long crown that results in a longer shaped crown.

NEWSBOY CAP: Casual, similar to a flat cap, only with a rounder, fuller crown and short brim, sometimes with a button. These are a very popular type of hats for men in Europe and the United States in the early 20th century, particularly with the working class. It’s now worn by both men and women.

OPERA HAT: Collapsible tall top hat made with a spring system throughout the crown, also called a gibus, originally designed to be stowed away where there was a shortage of closet space, such as at the theater or opera house.

OPTIMO: Straw Panama hat, or other straw or wool hat, with a crease in the crown from front to back, designed so it can be rolled up. First made popular on Ecuadorian Panama hats in the late 19th century.

PANAMA: Made from the leaves of the paja toquilla palm which only grows in Ecuador, this Ecuadorian hat was named the “Panama hat” when North Americans building the Panama Canal first found them in Panama at the turn of the 20th century. Often referred to as the finest straw hat made in the world, the hat takes 3-4 days to make for the basic weaves, or 6-8 months to make the finest weaves, sold throughout the world in many different shapes and styles.

PILLBOX: Made from fabric, wool and fur with straight sides and a flat top, this cap was first recorded in Medieval times. Made famous in the 1960s when worn by Jackie Kennedy at President Kennedy’s inauguration.

PINCH FRONT CROWN: Pinched crown hat from wool, straw and fabric.

PITH HELMET: Originally made from pith that comes from the spongewood tree, then covered with cotton cloth, this hat resembles a helmet. Made famous in India in the 19th century as the utmost in sun protection.

PLANTER: Low crown shaped with an indent and pushed out in the center, first used in the Caribbean by planters working in the cane fields, made from wool, straw or other fabrics, and most recently popular with golfers.

PORK PIE: Low telescoped crown short brim hat, made from wool or straw, worn by both men and women and popular since the 1930’s.

PUB CAP: 6-panel cap, more contoured than the Dockman, designed a bit rounder and more fitted, with the bill barely exposed. Popular with a younger customer, modern and trendy look, ideal for men wanting to upgrade from their go-to baseball cap.

PUGGAREE: Pleated hat band made from an assortment of fabric, used as a hat band on many hat shapes, most seen as a trim on fedora shaped headwear.

RAINDURA ®: Revolutionary hat treatment that adds water repellency and shape retention, maintaining shape even after getting wet, made from revolutionary thermosetting yarn which is hand woven into a paper fiber straw hat, treated with an ultra light yet extremely effective water repellent coating, proprietary of the Bollman Hat Company.

ROLLED BRIM: Brim of a hat that is curled up all around, found on a number of hat styles.

SAFARI HAT: Wide brim hat with a chinstrap, gently turned down sloping brim, medium to high crown often with a center dent. First manufactured in Asia in the 1800s, frequently worn on safaris, intended to be worn during hot weather.

SAILOR: Flat crown with a flat brim, usually made from straw and trimmed with a grosgrain hat band.

SHANTUNG: Lightweight high performance paper rolled into yarn to imitate straw, cellophane coated, often made from buntal. Originally used as a less expensive alternative of Panama straw and now accepted as high quality and used extensively on Western cowboy hats.

SNAP BRIM: Narrow brim with the flexibility to turn up or down, often worn down in the front and up in back. Available on many hat styles.

TEARDROP CROWN: Pinched teardrop shaped-crown, narrower at the front and sloped down toward the back, also referred to as a C-crown.

TELESCOPE CROWN: Made from a circular indentation, available on a number of hat styles.

TOP HAT: Tall crown topper generally made from wool or fabric, made popular in the 19th century and associated with formal occasions, often associated with the opera. Historically among the most recognizable of all types of hats. 

TRAPPER: Cold weather hat with flaps that cover the ears, often made from fur or faux fur and used by outdoor enthusiasts the world over. `

TRILBY: Similar in shape and style to a fedora, first made popular in England.

TURBAN: Hat covering generally constructed from fabric, usually seen in India and other Asian countries. First made famous by the Moors in Spain as early as the 11th century. Presently used in many parts of the world and often sold to women who are suffering from cancer and other illnesses that cause hair loss.

USHANKA: Fur or faux fur cap with ear flaps, popular with outdoor enthusiasts especially in Russia where the hat originates.

YARMULKE: Brimless cap usually made from cloth or leather, knitted or crocheted, worn everyday by religious Jewish men and during prayer services by all Jewish men. Also referred to as a “kippah”, which is Hebrew meaning “dome.”