When Stetson first started making its iconic cowboy hats in 1865, they were sold with an open crown (a rounded dome) that served as a blank canvas for the wearer to crease in a manner that best suited their lifestyle. The custom crease communicated information about the wearer’s origin, profession and personality. The quality and type of crease worked as a kind of shortcut to judging the “measure of a man”. As times modernized, manufacturers began creasing their hats in factories so they could be sold pre-creased for mass distribution. The crease was no longer an indicator of social standing but rather became an expression of style, as it continues to be today.
Which is your favorite?
Indeed true, the ''cattleman crease'' became a symbol of ones wealth as a large cattle owner...
My Stetson brand Fedora i bought at JJ hat centre in NY was an open crown hat and they hand shaped it before my eyes.
Today's hat makers favorite block for this is known as a ''number 52'' , an open crown block style I make but not yet up on the website.