In a previous post, I gave some tips to filling out a wardrobe on a budget. I mentioned that finding a quality hat and chaps are important rather than a variety of really cheap sets. Quality doesn’t mean you have to spend a bazillion dollars on a 100x felt hat. There are a number of mid-range options that look great, last, and don’t cost a fortune. My choice of show hat is Bailey’s 4x Lighting felt hat. Bailey’s has a wide selection of western hats that range in price and quality but the Lightning hat is my favorite. The style comes in a wide range of colors and sizes and ranges in price from $89.00-$125.00 (depending on color). Most of my hats have been purchased through Rods which offers the option of shaping the hat to suit your event (for a show hat, choose the quarter horse crease). You can also purchase the hat through Amazon, but would need to have it shaped elsewhere.
The beauty of these hats is that they are not a high enough quality to bring their prices through the roof but they are quality enough to be used for a number of years and at almost any level of show. They also do a decent job of holding their shape and color and are easily reshaped.They are a classic hat for a great price. Most super cheap hats reflect that quality with poor shape, color, and durability. A properly shaped and classic hat can make a world of difference in the show ring and your show outfit. Be careful not to skimp too much on this important piece of show attire.
Coming Up Soon! My tips for taking care of that show hat!