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An UrbanDaddy Publication

The Six Panama Hats to Consider

  • Kempt Staff


We’ve sung the praises of the venerable Panama hat many times before.

And for good reason: it’s the nearest thing to a perfect specimen of warm-weather dapperness man may ever create. Which is why, every year around this time, we come back around to the trusty topper. And if you’re contemplating a new one, you’d do well to start here:

The six Panama hats to consider this summer, after the jump.»

Your Straw Hat Hookup

  • Kempt Staff

bhat Consider this a late-breaking addition to last week’s five best straw hats out there...

It’s the Biarritz from legendary milliners Worth & Worth, woven from a sturdy brisa straw in a bright tobacco shade and banded with a ribbon in a spot-on blogger blue. It also just so happens that our friends at UrbanDaddy Perks are turning your $100 into $150 at Worth & Worth—it's extra buying power that you can put toward this beauty or any one of their many spectacular straw toppers, ready for the warmer months ahead.

In fact, let’s take a look at a few more of our favorites.»

The Basics of Buying a Panama Hat

  • Najib Benouar

Here at Kempt HQ, we often receive letters from our readers—most of it adoring fan mail—but every so often we get a question from an inquiring soul who we feel the need to help. This week, we received a letter from a reader who was looking to buy his first Panama hat but wasn’t sure where to start.

We’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: the Panama hat is the perfect summer accomplice. But before you take the plunge, you should know a few basics: these aren’t just any straw hats—they’re hand-woven toquilla straw (from Ecuador, not Panama). It’s not all fedoras; there are a handful of classic styles to choose from. And you’ve got a major decision to make—whether you’re going to roll it or keep it crisp.

Allow us to expound on these three tenets of buying a Panama hat.»

Anna Speckhart is Such A Treat

  • Kempt Staff

Anna Speckhartvia WBE

O’Toole Cool: In light of Peter O’Toole stepping away from the game, Selectism rounds up his five most stylish onscreen looks. One oversight: he nailed the Panama hat and three-speed in The Last Emperor. [Selectism]

No Relation: Rolling Stone presents the playlist from the Rolling Stones’ very first show, to mark their 50th anniversary. [RS]

Dropped Call: You might want to sit down for this: Carly Rae Jepsen has never actually given her phone number to a guy, the AP reports. [Vulture]

Cover Charge: The Quarterly is already halfway through a pretty spectacular year of cover girls. Let’s take a moment to reflect. [GQ]

Icon: Andy Garcia

  • Najib Benouar

Andy Garcia has given us a lot over the years—he’s been the gold standard of slick bastards everywhere since his first big screen outing in The Untouchables. (It doesn’t hurt to never have a hair out of place and a hint of an accent—he was born in Havana.) And on occasion of his latest turn, as a mustachioed agnostic religious freedom fighter in 1920s Mexico, we thought we’d take a moment to applaud his contributions to the three-piece suit, ascot, Panama hat and round horn-rimmed glasses, to name a few.

Without further ado, an appreciation of one cool customer in five pictures.»

A Gentleman’s Guide to the Summer Hat

The sun just woke up. And it is angry.

So while during the other eight months of the year, a brimmed hat might be a lovable affectation, we’ve entered the scorching stretch of days when that brim serves a vital function. You need shelter from the sun—and if possible, you’d like to do it without looking like a complete yokel. If you’re ready to move beyond the baseball cap, we’ve got three places for you to look...

Three prime options for your summer hat»

A Case Study for the Panama Hat

For all our gushing about the wild charms of the panama hat, actually wearing one can be a bit tricky. So we thought we’d shine a light on a gentleman who managed to pull it off without looking too much like Allan Quatermain.

The gentleman is Luke Mountain, a New York department store mainstay and owner of a particularly handsome Borsalino Panama. Of course, he’s in about as urban a setting as this world affords, but he pulls it off perfectly, thanks in large part to that linen blazer. Beyond that, the outfit couldn’t be more New York—the raw denim, the expert-level pattern matching between shirt and tie—but the loose color match is enough to tie it all together.

If you’ve got a khaki-colored jacket in your closet, you may want to pull the same trick. Just keep an eye out for hat racks.

Constance Jablonski is Challenging You to a Drag Race

The History of Beer: A longform look at the quest to recreate archeological beers. Amazing stuff. [Smithsonian]

The Hundred-Year Trend: Mister Crew reprints a trend piece on panama hats circa 1902. It holds up. [Mister Crew]

Jackasses No More: A wistful look at the gentlemen of jackass, who suffered so greatly for our pleasure. [Splitsider]

Blowing Bubbles: A home guide to making your own seltzer—with as much bite as your scotch can stand. [The Storque]

Pith and Vinegar

This snap comes from the latest Woolrich Woolen Mills collection (designed by Mr. McNairy), recently unveiled at Pitti Uomo. And while we’d normally wait until it’s in stores, we noticed something so game-changing, we couldn’t help but call your attention to it.

Ladies and gentlemen, pith helmets are now officially a thing.

This is one of two photos that finds a sharp-but-woodsy gentleman doffing the colonial topper. To be honest, we’ve been waiting years to bring out ours. Just think of it as the harder-nosed cousin to the panama hat, perfect whether you’re hitting the rooftop pool scene or exploring Madagascar.

Also, be ready to look a little bit ridiculous.

Kristina Has Scandalized the Hacienda

Be Prepared: The latest preppy touchstones, annotated by Gant Rugger’s Christopher Bastin. [GQ]

The Talented Mr. Delon: The Bengal Stripe digs up a bizarre world French version of Talented Mr. Ripley, with plenty of mid-century style along for the ride. [The Bengal Stripe]

Into the Mouth of Madness: A journey into the dark heart of Ron English’s studio. He must really like McDonald’s. [It Drew Itself]

Straw Poll: The trad community agrees: it is now safe to doff your Panama hat. [A Suitable Wardrobe]

Kempt Man of the Hour: John C. Reilly

This week, John C. Reilly faced two immutable, contradictory truths.

First, Cannes is very glamorous. Second, Cannes is very hot.

His solution takes a page from southern style. He arrived at the 64th Cannes Film Festival wearing a pair of shortwing spectators, a featherweight suit and a panama hat—a throwback, to be sure.

It’s the kind of thing you could imagine Chaplin wearing on his day off, but for a half-comic actor like Reilly, it’s the perfect reminder that he isn’t just appearing in Scottish psychodramas all day.

In other words, it’s the best possible way to dress like a clown. As it turns out, French cinephiles have a soft spot for them.