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Wide-brim Felt Hat Buying Guide

Wide-brim Felt Hat Buying Guide

Welcome to the Felt Hat Buying Guide by Will & Bear. Our journey began in 2015 with our founder, Alex, affectionately known as Bear was struggling to find a hat that wasn't intimidating and felt natural in the Australian outdoors, this led to Will & Bear.

This guide aims to help you find the perfect felt hat that suits your style and needs, making you feel confident and inspired every time you wear it. Dive in to explore different styles, stiffness ratings, and tips on selecting the right fit and caring for your hat.

Basic Anatomy & Key Measurements

To begin with i will run you through the basics of a wide brim felt hat and common terms.

Key Measurments

A = Crown Height - Effects overall appearance of hat

B = Brim Width - Measured from edge of crown. Confident hat wearers wear wider crowns

C = Fit Depth - How deep the hat feels when worn can be different from crown height depending on styles

D = Internal Circumference or Size

Basic Anatomy

Below is the basic anatomy of a hat. Hats come with different crown ssyles most of our hat sa re trear driop shaped crowns

Crown - Often


Brim Edge

Accessory / Band

Sweat band

Styles of Wide-brim Felt Hats

Choosing the right hat style is key to finding one that complements your look and suits your needs. Felt hats come in various designs, each with unique characteristics and uses. Whether you're looking for something formal, rugged, or casual, there's a hat style for every occasion. In this section, we'll explore popular styles such as fedoras, cowboy hats, rancher hats, floppy hats, and wide brim sun hats, detailing their features and the scenarios they are best suited for.

Proper Fitting & Sizing

Proper fit and sizing are essential for both comfort and style when choosing a felt hat. To ensure the correct fit, measure your head by wrapping a soft measuring tape around your forehead, just above your ears, and over the bump at the back of your head. This measurement helps you select the right hat size, preventing discomfort and ensuring your hat stays in place. Additionally, the fit of your hat affects the shape of the brim; a tighter fit can cause the brim to bend more, creating a more pronounced curve. Ensuring the right fit not only enhances your hat's appearance but also ensures a comfortable and secure wear.

The most accrurate way to measure you head at home is with a soft measuring tape.

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Stiffness Ratings and Their Importance

Understanding stiffness ratings is crucial for choosing the right felt hat, as it affects fit, comfort, and packing ability.

Soft hats are flexible and comfortable, conforming to your head shape but may lose their form more easily.

Medium stiffness offers a balance of comfort and shape retention, suitable for various occasions.

Stiff hats maintain their structure well, providing a formal look but can be less comfortable.

Additionally, softer hats are easier to pack without damaging their shape, while stiffer hats need careful handling. Selecting the appropriate stiffness ensures your hat fits well, feels comfortable, and suits your travel needs.

Examples of Different Stiffness Ratings: Stiff style Andy (Left), Semi Soft Styles Like Calloway (Centre) , Super Soft like William (Right)

Hot Tip! Filter you collection pages by 'Stiffness Rating'

Care and Maintenence

Wool felt is a durable material known for its ability to remember its shape, making it an excellent choice for hats. Ok so it happens! You found your favourite felt hat in the footwell of your car - it’s dirty and banged up out of shape. Don’t sweat! Wool is a durable material that remembers it shape. Lets we can run you through how to bring it back to life.


Felt Hat Materials

Felt is a versatile material used in hat-making, available in various types, each with its own unique properties and benefits.

Beaver Felt: It is made from the dense underfur of beavers. Hats made from beaver felt are often more expensive due to the premium quality of the material.

Rabbit Felt: It is made from the fur of rabbits and offers good water resistance and durability. Rabbit felt hats are generally less expensive than beaver felt but still provide a high level of quality and comfort.

Wool Felt: Wool felt is a popular choice for hats due to its excellent properties. It is made from the wool of sheep and is known for being lightweight, breathable, and durable. Wool felt hats are versatile and can be worn in various climates, providing comfort even in summer.

At Will & Bear, we choose wool felt for our hats because it is light and breathable, making it ideal for year-round wear. Our wool felt is also renewable and sourced from waste fibers that the fashion industry discards, ensuring minimal environmental impact. By using these waste fibers, we support Australian wool growers, as no other material sources come from Australia. This commitment to sustainability and local sourcing helps us create high-quality hats that are both eco-friendly and supportive of the local economy.

Bear shaping a felt hat in the workshop

Propper Storage

Proper storage is essential to maintaining the shape and quality of your felt hat. Wool felt is a durable material that remembers its shape, but it still needs to be stored correctly to prevent damage. Our favorite storage method is using hat walls, which not only keep your hats in pristine condition but also turn them into a stylish display. It's important to avoid storing your hats in direct sunlight, as prolonged exposure can cause fading and weaken the fibers. By storing your hats on a hat wall or using dedicated hat stands and boxes in a cool, dry place, you can ensure they remain in excellent shape and are always ready to wear.

Do This

Store your hat in a cool dry place like on your wall

Don't Do This

Don't keep your hat on the dash of your car

OK, Where Do I Start?

Soft styles are a great place to start if you new to hats. If your confident try something with a wider brim and taller crown.

If you're new to felt hats and unsure where to start, consider our entry-level styles. These popular options are characterized by super soft wool and shorter brims, providing a comfortable and approachable fit. Many customers gravitate towards these styles when they're uncertain, as they offer a great blend of style and ease of wear. For those looking to make a bolder statement, our advanced styles feature wider brims and taller crowns, with stiffer materials to hold their shape. These hats are perfect for those who are ready to elevate their hat game and embrace a more distinctive look.

In Summary

And there you have it—a simple and effective way to achieve a custom fit for your hat using hat fillers. Whether you're in between sizes or just need a bit more snugness, these fillers are perfect for fine-tuning your hat's fit. After identifying where extra support is needed, place the fillers under the sweatband, adjusting as necessary. Once you've achieved the perfect fit, secure the fillers in place, and your hat will be snug and comfortable, ready for any adventure. Enjoy your perfectly fitting hat and happy travels!