Help me find a dashing fedora for my dad, since elegance is the privilege of age
January 2, 2008 9:27 AM   Subscribe

I want to get my father a hat for his 70th birthday. No, I don't mean one of those awful narrow-brimmed glen plaid affairs that are about as stylish and becoming as toe rubbers. I’m thinking a wide-brimmed fedora made of a good quality gray felt – something like this, and like what "Jack McCoy" sometimes wears on Law & Order (unfortunately can’t find a picture of Sam Waterston in his fedora). I’ve looked in the malls in Toronto and the only suitable hat I could find was $85 plus tax, which is both rather steep for my gift budget and too much to spend on something I am not convinced my mother and I can coax my dad into wearing;-). Does anyone know where (preferably) in Toronto or (plan B) online I can find a less expensive hat (hopefully not over $50) for Dad Swan?
posted by orange swan to Shopping (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Why buy him something you're not sure he'll use?
posted by onhazier at 9:30 AM on January 2, 2008 [1 favorite]

Good quality hats are expensive; moreso because they're not a mass-produced item these days. You pay for quality; it's that simple. I think I recall seeing what looked like a good store on Spadina, south of College (possibly north of Dundas, possibly south of it, too) on the east side. Small store, looked like it had been in business forever, lots of hats, not sure about price. But if you're looking for classic, it's the kind of store I think would suit you.
posted by Dasein at 9:32 AM on January 2, 2008

(BTW, the store I'm talking about is not Big It Up.)
posted by Dasein at 9:34 AM on January 2, 2008

What Dasein said. Good hats are expensive; if you get him a cheap hat it will look cheap (and he'll be less likely to wear it). Either suck it up and spend the money or (probably a better plan if you're not even sure he'll wear it) get him something else.
posted by languagehat at 9:37 AM on January 2, 2008

I believe the store referred to above is Rotman's Hat Shop, 345 Spadina Avenue. The store doesn't have a phone, but it sure has a lot of hats.
posted by Ohdemah at 9:51 AM on January 2, 2008

That's the one, Ohdemah! Doesn't that look like the perfect classic hat store?
posted by Dasein at 9:59 AM on January 2, 2008

A $50 fedora should last the year it will take to see if he actually wears it before buying him a nice one for his 71st.
posted by rhizome at 10:16 AM on January 2, 2008

Aww, man. That's a beautiful store window :) And yes, to third it, a hat worthy of Dad Swan will cost over $50. The Stetson Temple, for example, is about US$130 most places. The Borsalino whose image you linked to is probably almost twice that. Do you know his numerical hat size, by the way? I'm afraid you will not find a "good quality" fedora in S/M/L/XL sizes.
posted by mumkin at 10:28 AM on January 2, 2008

If you have time, the Fedora Lounge is a great place to research certain hats. They deal a lot with vintage hats though. If you know what you are looking for (and in what size) there are always great deals on eBay for vintage hats in great condition.
posted by Ctrl_Alt_ep at 4:17 PM on January 2, 2008

I'll agree with CAE re: Fedora Lounge, and reccomend you check some vintage stores for something in his size. You're looking for brands like Stetson, Borsalino and Dobbs. You will, of course, need to know his size. And what a good hat is like.
posted by YoungAmerican at 6:29 PM on January 2, 2008

Echoing the fact that good hats are expensive and that you will need to know his hat size. I just got my own Borsalino and found a huge difference in comfort between a 58, a 59 and a 60 (centimeters, European size). 59 is a perfect fit, the others just don't feel right.
posted by kepano at 1:02 AM on January 3, 2008

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