Brent Black Panama Hats

The Panama Hat Company of the Pacific

Congratulations! You have found the Panama Hats Home Page and the world’s finest Panama hats. On this site, you can shop for a fine Panama hat, see how Panama hats are made, find out how to measure your head size, discover why one Panama hat costs more than another, and much more. For more than 20 years my specialty, and passion, has been the legendary Montecristi Panama hat. From jungle plant to finished style, each hat requires at least a hundred hours of skilled hand work to create. The very finest can take almost a thousand hours. I hope you will enjoy the site.

B. Brent Black

Saving the Art of Montecristi Panama Hats

Business Practices & Ethics

We exist to prevent the extinction of a fine art.

Brent Black Panama Hats Business Practices and Ethics

The business was created in 1988 with the specific goal to prevent the impending extinction of the art of fine hat weaving in Montecristi. How do we save the art of fine hat weaving? Simple. Buy as many hats as possible, raise market prices so weavers earn enough to make weaving a desirable way to make a living.

Weaving School

60 new weavers in first five years!

Panama Hats Weaving School

Established in January 2011, in the village where the very finest hats are woven, our little school is teaching the next generation to weave–to perform the sorcery that turns straw into cloth. PLAY VIDEO

The Montecristi Foundation

To save the art, first we must save the artists.

We have been working, sometimes successfully, for almost 30 years to improve quality of life for the weavers. We have provided free medical care, prescription medications, blood tests, eye exams, food, clean water for the village, and more.

El Gringo Loco

The weavers never met a buyer like me.

El Gringo Loco thumbnail

I don’t try to beat them or cheat them, like they’re used to from the local buyers. I treat the weavers like my teammates, not my adversaries. They make what I sell. I want them to keep weaving. I pay higher prices, give them free supplies, even free groceries. An entertaining example:

There’s More to Life Than Hats

More To Life Than Hats Thumbnail

This little boy caught my eye.

I noticed his eyes don’t agree with each other. I worried he couldn’t learn to read, that kids would tease him. We got him to an optometrist and into a series of corrective lenses. Here’s how it happened.

Celebrities with my hats

Robert Redford (left) and Steven Tyler (right) wearing Brent Black Panama hats. Others include Harrison Ford, Francis Ford Copolla & (many more)

NPR Reviews Finest Hat Ever Woven

8 months to weave, straw thinner than dental floss.

NPR Reviews Finest Hat Ever Woven

Simón Espinal, the best-ever weaver, wove the finest-ever Montecristi hat – from June 19, 2013 to February 20, 2014. NPR and National Geographic writer Roff Smith tells the story.


Videos: Finest Hat Ever Woven

Can you follow those fingers?

Simón Espinal, Sorcerer of Straw

Simón Espinal, Sorcerer of Straw Reg speed

One-fourth speed

Brent Black in National Geographic

Brent Black In National Geographics

Even National Geographic noticed my work to save the art of weaving Montecristi Panama hats is important. See the article.

Brent Black on CBS News

Keoghan's Heroes Screenshot

I’m one of Keoghan’s Heroes on CBS. And he’s one of mine. Watch the video.

Brent Black’s Hats are the “Best of the Best”

Robb Report Best of the Best Award

Brent Black Montecristi Panama hats are the only hats named to Robb Report’s exclusive Best of the Best list.

Celebrities Wearing Panama Hats

Check out Steven Tyler’s Brent Black Panama hat in his “Girls of Summer” Music Video

Panama Hats of Presidents, Kings, and Other Rascals

Panama Hats of Presidents Kings and Other Rascals

Here’s the “Who’s Who” of famous people and celebrities who wear Montecristi Panama hats, including movie stars, rock stars, sports stars, and others who own Brent Black Panama hats.

Panama Hats in the Movies

Panama Hats In The Movies. Sigourney Weaver from The Year of Living Dangerously, Anthony Hopkins from Hannibal, and Klaus Kinski from Fitzcarraldo.

Sigourney Weaver, Anthony Hopkins, Klaus Kinski, and others.

The Panama Hat Company of the Pacific dba Brent Black Panama Hats 1314 Center Dr., Suite B-448 Medford, OR 97501 There is no retail store at this address. (more) Toll Free: (888) 658-6500 Phone: (541) 201-3113

Text and photos © 1988-2022, B. Brent Black. All rights reserved.

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111 Hekili Street, Suite A-293; Kailua, HI 96734 Ph: (888) 658-6500 Fax: (808) 262-7725