February 12, 2017 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm #619238
If you look at photos of yeshivish Jews from 30 or more years ago, you will notice that men’s hats were not always black and much smaller than the black hats that are worn currently. In particular, big black hats have gotten expensive. Modestly sized felt or wool fedoras are available at prices much lower than the Borsalino that seems to be de riguer today. When did frum hats get so big, and why? And, given the expense, why not downsize?February 13, 2017 12:20 am at 12:20 am #1216878
They started getting bigger about 30 years ago. They’re getting smaller now. You should have started this thread 30 years ago.February 13, 2017 12:27 am at 12:27 am #1216879
Maybe because houses and shul got bigger.
Closets too. More storage to fit those hats.
Maybe also heads got bigger.
With more access to food and such. Maybe hats are less heavy now that bones are stronger.
Aren’t the children of immigrants often taller too?February 13, 2017 12:39 am at 12:39 am #1216880JosephParticipant
huju, and when did Sephardic men stop wearing turbans? Shouldn’t they go back to turbans, being they’re cheaper than Borsalinos?February 13, 2017 2:06 am at 2:06 am #1216881LitvosMember
It could be that some wear fedoras and some homburgs. Many fedoras are larger than the homburgs and thus you might have thought they have gotten bigger. I could be mistaken, but I think it is a valid point.February 13, 2017 2:12 am at 2:12 am #1216882golferParticipant
This thread is all mixed up.
It’s chassidish ladies who wear turbans.
And black hats are shrinking these days, their brims compressing to precariously thin proportions, as prices rise in inverse increments.February 13, 2017 2:36 am at 2:36 am #1216883
Reply to Joseph: I’m Ashkenaz. I don’t know anything about Sefardim wearing turbans. Ask them.
I don’t know whether the hats are getting bigger or smaller today, but why does the size change. Torah hasn’t changed. Talmud hasn’t changed.February 13, 2017 3:01 am at 3:01 am #1216884
What happened to that poster looking for a hat in Lakewood?
Maybe he can clue us in, as he seemed to be investigating hatsFebruary 13, 2017 4:52 am at 4:52 am #1216885nishtdayngesheftParticipant
I thought any mention of a hat brought an automatic response from Charlie Hall about a fedora.February 13, 2017 7:43 am at 7:43 am #1216886yungermanSParticipant
brims on hats are getting SMALLER today with added designs like feathers or needle that used to only be on hats that werent fetedorasFebruary 13, 2017 9:54 am at 9:54 am #1216887catch yourselfParticipant
Apparently, the hat malach has been eating too much cholent.February 13, 2017 10:09 am at 10:09 am #1216888
huju, It’s called fashion. If Joe Borsalino decides to make a wider brim, within about 3 years all bochurim will be wearing wider brims.February 13, 2017 11:55 am at 11:55 am #1216889
Maybe people’s heads have gotten bigger.February 13, 2017 9:28 pm at 9:28 pm #1216890yitzy99Member
“If you look at photos of yeshivish Jews from 30 years ago.. “
30 years ago they were called frum Jews.
I don’t “yeshivish” was used then.February 13, 2017 9:35 pm at 9:35 pm #1216891
yitzy99, of course ‘Yeshivish’ was used then.February 13, 2017 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm #1216892akupermaParticipant
The only change is that fedoras became more popular as a dress hat, which began when hats started to go out of style (attributed to President Kennedy losing his top hat for his post-swearing in walk down Pennsylvania Avenue). Since they were a “dress hat” (fedoras were traditionally an un-dress, weekday hat), they tended to get nice. Other hat styles seen in the community (Streimels, Homburgs) are unchanged. In the past, people wore caps more often, but they were never Shabbos-dik (and remember, the pictures you see in the past were of weekday hats only, for obvious reasons). Also most frum Jews tend to be more affluent, and dressing better is part of that (in the past they were dominated by diamond workers and sweatshop workers, now we have lots of lawyers and accountants)February 14, 2017 3:21 am at 3:21 am #1216893
Because more people realized that they’re really dressing to stand before the King and decided to boost their kavod to a wider brimFebruary 14, 2017 5:37 pm at 5:37 pm #1216894HaLeiViParticipant
Because of the Eiruv. Is that not obvious?February 14, 2017 6:45 pm at 6:45 pm #1216895
I thought fashion was assur, but some posters openly embrace fashion, and others just seem to go along with whatever Mr. Borsalino wants to sell. My next fedora will be felt, might not be black, will be much smaller than the current Borsalinos.
And speaking of black, why not light-colored hats for warm weather? Should one be schvitzing like a pro athlete while standing before a king?February 14, 2017 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm #1216896
No, people don’t buy BECAUSE it’s fashionable. But you buy what’s available, which happens to be what’s in fashion.
On the subject, is it true that bochurim in Chabad yeshivos davka wear hats with smaller brims?February 17, 2017 1:18 am at 1:18 am #1216897zushaParticipant
It’s simple, with smaller hats you become tanned & if you are tanned, people will think you haven’t been spending all day inside studying. Solution: bigger hats.February 17, 2017 2:01 am at 2:01 am #1216898
I think zusha wins an award. That was a pretty awesome answer!February 17, 2017 2:05 am at 2:05 am #1216899
Actually, I was a bit bothered by it. I am not sure if this is how he meant it, but it sounds like it could be implying that Yeshiva bochurim aren’t really learning. Maybe that wasn’t how it was meant, but it seems to me that it could be taken that way.February 17, 2017 2:23 am at 2:23 am #1216900
I didn’t read it that way.
I read it that if a Yeshiva bochur (who obvious studies) walked around, esp in Israel, with a smaller brim, then he could tan easily and quickly (like just the walk to shul in the sun) and thus no one would believe that he spends all day studying.
But now that I read it the way that you thought that it was, it’s like that picture with the Vase and the Two Faces.
I only saw a Vase. But then someone points out the Two Faces. Life is never the same afterward.February 17, 2017 3:22 am at 3:22 am #1216901zushaParticipant
Don’t worry Lilmod Ulelamaid I didn’t mean it that way! I meant it in the lighthearted way that they do it so no one could get the wrong idea 🙂February 17, 2017 3:45 am at 3:45 am #1216902
k – sorry for misjudging you – I wasn’t sure how it was meant and realized it could be meant either way.June 21, 2017 3:22 pm at 3:22 pm #1301701
I think zusha is on to something.June 21, 2017 3:33 pm at 3:33 pm #1301736DovidBTParticipant
New product idea: A “reverse sunlamp” that makes you paler.June 21, 2017 4:02 pm at 4:02 pm #1301740yytzParticipant
I like bigger hats, since they protect against the sun better. Small hats with barely any brim don’t really serve much of a purpose.
Perhaps bigger hats have also become more popular because they are a bigger statement against assimilation. A small hat suggests you’re trying to be lower profile. A big hat suggests you don’t care about sticking out with your huge headwear, since you’re proud to be a frum Jew and totally out of step with American popular culture. The more loud and distinctive to Jews the hat is, the better it is in terms of assimilation and group pride. (I guess we can’t take that principle too far — otherwise we’d be wearing gigantic top hats with huge neon yellow stars of David all over them.)
Also, the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s use of a big wide hat for decades may have influenced even non-chassidim to adopt similarly full-sized hats. Reportedly, asked by a chassid whether the chassid should wear a traditional chassidic-style hat according to his specific local minhagim, the Lubavitcher Rebbe replied that no one nowadays is going to be impressed with such a hat — just wear a Borsalino (a basic dressy hat that at the time (a few decades ago) was the mark of a respectable middle-class person in America).June 21, 2017 8:34 pm at 8:34 pm #1302105
Bigger hats do offer more sun protection.
Are bigger hats more likely to go airborne?
Do any of these bigger hats come with those side straps that wrap under the chin, to prevent them from flying off?June 22, 2017 2:22 pm at 2:22 pm #1302633
If you look carefully at the photos of some Chassideshe courts from the Alte Heim, the Shtreimlach have actually been getting smaller over time from the much large ones worn by Polish nobility; most likely because the cost of fur has been rising as a result of the Endangered Species Act and a recognition that the smaller Shtreimlach provide a smaller profile target for some antisemitim throwing snowballs.June 27, 2017 9:33 am at 9:33 am #1304794
Big or less big, maybe hats today have more safety features, like cars.June 27, 2017 10:33 am at 10:33 am #1304858akupermaParticipant
One should note that the “dress” fedora came into existence when Americans stopped wearing fedoras as part of regular male clothing. That would have been in the 1960s. Before that, fedoras were an un-dress hat, or as we call it a weekday hat. Americans are apparently starting to wear hats again, and one wonders if the growth of small non-fancy fedoras will impact on out choice of hats (perhaps shifting more to hamburg or even back to top hats???).
A dress hat among Orthodox Jews would tend to “big” since we don’t use cars on Shabbos, and the argument against a big hat is its inconvenience in cars or other motorized transit.June 28, 2017 9:50 am at 9:50 am #1306073
Big hats are also inconvenient in crowdsOctober 19, 2021 3:32 pm at 3:32 pm #2018600MaivinParticipant
they getting smaller and smallerOctober 19, 2021 5:37 pm at 5:37 pm #2018686mesivta bachurParticipant
It seems to me streimlach are also getting bigger the old streimlach look like fur donuts, today they’re essentially small tires with elegantly up swept fur.October 19, 2021 8:01 pm at 8:01 pm #2018750philosopherParticipant
Gadolhadorah, when was the last time you’ve seen a shtreimel? Today they’re bigger, taller and higher than any noble has ever worn, guaranteed.October 19, 2021 8:08 pm at 8:08 pm #2018756
There is an old Texas expression, “all hat, no cattle” that was meant to disparage those faux cowboys who tried to use a wide-brimmed Stetson to establish their credentials. I don’t think that was ever an issue within the frum tzibur since the size of Borselinos or Shteimlach was never highly correlated with lamdus or gadlus.October 20, 2021 9:08 am at 9:08 am #2018938RedlegParticipant
Akuperma mentions that today’s streimlach are unchanged. Really? Today’s streimlach don’t look at all like those of 40-50 years ago. The older ones were much flatter, not trimmed or teased up, and the crown often protruded above the the fur brim. Modern (yes, modern) shreimlach look like a bad haircut.October 20, 2021 11:18 am at 11:18 am #2018966
I have seen some men wearing hats covered with plastic shopping bags when it is raining, presumably to protect the hat. Two problems:
1. If the hat is felt, it does not need protection from rain. Felt is made to recover from being rained on.
2. Putting a plastic shopping bag on a hat looks … well, … stupid, hardly the way one would stand before any king, especially the King of kings.
Another thing: One of the posters referred to a certain hat as “hamburg”. I believe that hat is worn by the counter personnel at fast food restaurants.October 20, 2021 11:28 am at 11:28 am #2018971
they getting smaller and smaller
I said that almost five years agoOctober 20, 2021 11:28 am at 11:28 am #2018973
1. Kashya oif a maysa. They get ruined in the rain.
2. They take them off when they daven. Also, now raincoats with built in hat sized hoods are ubiquitous, and plastic bags over hats are no longer common.October 21, 2021 1:06 pm at 1:06 pm #2019311
To DaasYoc: A friend of mine has a coat with a hood that covers a very big hat. But the coat utterly fails to keep out any rain. Have they fixed that coat? I have not seen it advertised in years.October 21, 2021 2:40 pm at 2:40 pm #2019393
Why would it work for the beavers but not for the Litvish? Borselino by Attica (model no. 238) is a 100 percent beaver felt hat which should keep its shape even in the rain.
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