Our wide-brimmed Hollywood-star Original recycled-tarp hat, a very cool thing, can nonetheless get a touch hot at times. That heavy cotton canvas fabric will trap some heat if you if you don't take your hat off and let your noggin breathe every once in a while!
So, over the last few years, we've tried several different approaches toward creating a hat with ventilated sides, still very much based around our signature recycled truck tarp, yet offering heat-relief for steamy climates. Ultimately, though, we were never satisfied with the results. The recycled mesh fabric samples we initially found in Brazil were either too difficult to obtain regularly, or else they simply wouldn't hold up the hat crown, flopping over like soft cloth. No good, in either case.
But then we got lucky. Really, really lucky.
Our new wide-brimmed Real Deal Brazil Brisa (pronounced BREE-suh) looks, at a distance, like our Original. Up close, though, you see the vented sides, two layers of thick burlap stitched in an open mesh style, and firm enough to hold up the crown. The burlap color compliments the canvas-tarp brim, crown and side band.
The hat's burlap fabric is actually reclaimed from old sacks used for carrying dried rice and beans to market in Brazil. But unlike traditional burlap, this stuff isn't scratchy, or itchy. It makes for a pretty comfy hat fit.
Burlap itself is an organic material, though seriously tough stuff, made from such fibrous plants as jute or sisal (the same hardy materials often found in the base of outdoor rugs). We don't know the particular plant fiber, in this case, but what we do know is that you can soak the heck out of this hat, and the burlap sides will, once dried thoroughly, firm back up to the general shape you set while the hat was still wet.
Note that our Brisa Ventilated Hats have no grommets; we couldn't see compromising the integrity of the burlap layers by puncturing them when the hat obviously didn't need the extra venting anyway! That also means, though, that you can't run a strap through the Brisa without some physical modification to the hat itself, so be mighty careful out in the wind, and around water. The Brisa Ventilated Hat doesn't sink quite as fast as our Original, but it will still sink.
For cleaning, hand-wash this hat a little more gently than with the full-canvas Original, going light on whatever mild soap you use, and then rinsing well and allowing the hat to air-dry fully. Again, make sure you give the burlap something to mold around, else it will set back up to look relaxed, not rigid.
The Real Deal Brazil Brisa Ventilated Hat. Because who doesn't at times wanna be a little cooler even than cool?