My husband’s family members have been generational ranchers in the panhandle…
Hats, as we know them today, have been shaped in part by our culture and history. Hats have been worn as protection through the ages, shielding their wearers from the sun as they worked outside in the fields. They have also been used as fashion statements, and, as with most accessories, their popularity has ebbed and flowed through the decades.
Nowadays, hats and caps come in just about every size, shape, color, and material you can imagine. There are hundreds of hats out there that vary in design, appearance, and usage. They are used to differentiate military uniforms, identify religious ranks, and display social status and fashion preferences.
It’s easier than ever to find a hat that expresses your style and mood. One type of hat, the “trucker hat,” is becoming commonplace amongst millennials and celebrities, but it didn’t start off as a trendy accessory. Rather, the trucker hat has a very humble beginning.
Originally, the trucker hat was a mere token given away by companies to farmers, rural workers, and truckers in the United States. The hats are made with a stiff foam front panel and mesh back pieces to allow perspiration to evaporate quickly, so they were perfect for the hard-working laborer. Additionally, the snap-back fastener created a one-size-fits-most piece of headwear, so workers of all shapes and sizes could benefit from their use.
Trucker hats were so cheap to make and distribute that local animal feed shops, agricultural implements stores, and tractor sellers created the trucker hats for next to nothing and gave them away as inexpensive advertising. These were some of the most effective promotional products handed out in many rural communities around the country.
Trucker hats are still given away by local feed stores and agricultural warehouses, and because of that, they are seen as a symbol of hard work. Many people collected dozens of trucker hats along the way. This is because of the age-old tradition of giving away trucker hats as part of a company’s promotions.
Eventually, though, trucker hats evolved from being strictly for working-class individuals to becoming an important designer emblem. Today, they can be seen on fashionistas from all walks of life. They remain a a perfect branding giveaway, but they have been made even more interesting by adding catchy phrases, extreme art designs, and other blingy embellishments. Among the most common favorites are custom trucker hats displaying such popular gaming icons as Super Mario Brothers, Duck Hunt, Metroid, and more. They are made of different materials and come in customizable sizes, such as with adjustable mesh trucker hats.
Today’s designs do not limit embroidery and printing to the front panel and brim. The designs and prints can also be seen along the sides or even on the back. With a highly visible hat as canvas, almost anything can be placed on it and still look good.