It's okay. Really. You're not alone. There are thousands more people like you. And me. You want Indiana Jones' hat.
You don't have any reason except.well, you want one. If you lived 75 years ago, it wouldn't even be a question: of course you'd own a hat. And you'd feel naked if you left the house without it.
After all, just look at it! The sharp brim. The distinctive shape. The flavor of class and dignity that comes with that 1930s style. Ah, the fedora! But, in an age of superstores, low prices and lower quality, where does one acquire such a thing of beauty? For me, the answer was obvious: why not contact the man who made Harrison Ford's hat? Marc Kitter, along with his partner Steve Delk, hand-made all the fedoras used in the latest Indiana Jones film, "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull". Kitter was contacted by Bernie Pollack, costume designer for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.
"He'd been told that that Steve and I had specialized ourselves on the Indy fedora and wanted to know if we could answer some questions. After quizzing us on brim widths, crown heights, ribbon width, fur quality and many other details, Pollack asked us for some samples. We sent in several sample hats and could do nothing but wait." According to Pollack, Spielberg had been worried. "Ah, I'm so relieved he [Spielberg] said.
I lost sleep wondering if you would be able to come up with the perfect hat." Kitter said, "But, after a test shooting with Harrison Ford and Steven Spielberg, the dream came true and we got the order. My wife went on vacation and Steve and I started making hats up to 18 hours a day." Eighteen hours a day? If that sounds like a lot, it helps to know what goes into making a real Indiana Jones fedora. The best fedoras are made from fur-felt, never wool. In fact, the highest quality fedora is made from beaver.
It's a long and difficult process. The fur is manipulated, treated and transformed into actual "felt", arguably the toughest fabric known to man. (The fibers are interlocked and arranged in every possible direction making it almost impossible to tear.) "The pure beaver felt used on my hats are specially made to my specs from a traditional manufacturer. This is the highest density felt I've ever worked with; and that adds to the durability of the final hat.
We even add water-repellant to the felt during the manufacturing process." From there, the best fedoras are hand-crafted over a wooden block. "Wooden hat blocks have the advantage of letting the felt "breath" while it dries on them. This is one of the many details that isn't always visible but prove valuable in the long haul." Ironically, one of the most important pieces of a high-quality fedora might be something that you rarely see: the sweatband.
Since this is the only part of the hat that actually touches the wearer's head, having the right material ensures comfort and durability. Kitter's hats use exclusive sweatbands made from kangeroo hide; the hides are traditionally tanned by a family-owned company in Australia. From there, they're cut and turned into the most shrink resistant leather sweatbands available, known and loved by customers all over the world. The finishing touch is the lining of the hat made from the highest quality bridal satin. "It looks and feels like silk but it's more resistant to dust and sweat.
" The whole process can take more than 14 hours by hand and it shows. So.what makes the Indiana Jones hat so unique? "The Indy Fedora is a classic brown snap brim Fedora with a contrasting dark brown ribbon, but the -- as is always the case with quality -- the devil is in the details," said Kitter. "The blockshape used for the Indy Fedora is very uncommon nowadays.
Today most classic hats have a tapered crown and are made from lightweight felt, mainly pure rabbit or rabbit beaver blends. But, even if you never have to worry about wearing your fedora through the jungles of South America or racing the Russians for an ancient artifact, you still deserve a hat that will survive normal living. "A high-quality fedora should be able to protect you from the elements, not the other way around.
The hat should withstand heavy downpours, hot and humid summer days, snow.but it should do it with style. So, you'll be able to wear the same hat to the restaurant at night," Kitter says. In other words, an authentic Indy fedora will get you positive feedback on a luxury cruise due to its velvet-like silky surface.
but it's just as appropriate with jeans and work-boots. So, whether you're looking for that final touch of class to go with a great suit and tie or you're excavating the garden to make room for the begonias, the classic Indiana Jones fedora is the perfect addition to your wardrobe. And yes, mine's on the way.
For more details on the Indiana Jones fedora or for ordering information, visit http://www.AdventureBiltDeluxe.com. Tony Rush lives in southeast Alabama with his wife, Jessica, three sons and a dachshund named Bentley who doesn't know he's a dog. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.