Epic Headwear

Many will agree that the ‘30s and ‘40s were the “Golden Age of Hats” with some amazing examples produced in the great factories around the world at that time. Optimo is bringing it all back.
Words // Zelda Grant | March 29, 2024 | Lifestyle

Hat sales peaked around 1914 in the U.S., and soon thereafter in many countries around the globe. Although the introduction of the automobile suddenly meant more people spent less time outdoors and more time driving around, hats still remained hugely popular and an essential part of proper dressing for the next few decades, and the top brands competed on quality. This competition led to finer and finer grades of hats as the techniques, tools and machines of the craft became more refined. Sadly, as the popularity of hats declined, so did quality. Founded in 1996 by Graham Thompson, Optimo Hat Company began with the dream of once again creating a “real” hat. Today, that dream is intact, with an ongoing focus on refinement and mastery of the craft. The foundation for his knowledge was obtained by apprenticing for years with Johnny Tyus, a legendary hatmaker from Chicago. Thompson’s quest to resurrect a lost quality has taken him around the world in search of the finest materials and in locating and bringing back to life antique machinery — all for clients who appreciate true luxury, enduring style, and the unmatched functionality of a great hat;