Ticket stub on the hat




When I first came across THE H.W.DOG&CO.,  I was surprised to learn that this premium hat brand from Japan was only established in 2015. They have such an extensive collection of products that are heavily inspired by the 19th and early 20th century vintage style. But what I found most interesting is the brand name itself — I could hardly relate “dog” to hats. Later on I read from an interview with THE H.W.DOG&CO.’s founder, Fumiya Tsurumaki, and learnt that the inclusion of “dog” in the brand name is merely for fun and has no particular meaning, I was very much intrigued and eager to learn more about the brand.


說著玩味的說話,工作起來比誰都認真。說真的,THE H.W.DOG&CO.可能是日本數一數二認真的製帽品牌了。在創立品牌以前,弦卷史也已經任職於別的日本帽子品牌,也曾經在古着店負責Re-make再製工作,因而在THE H.W.DOG&CO.剛成立,很快就為品牌摸索出方向 —— 重現20世紀大量生產出現前的精緻製帽技巧,並承襲20年代美式復古、40年代後的軍事和歐洲工裝風格作為設計主軸。而因著這些鮮明的定位,加上工藝精湛,很快就獲得時尚界的注目和認同。

只是擁有手藝嫻熟的職人,不足以撐起一個品牌,硬體像製模工具和縫紉機也是不可或缺的。除了使用木模工具,品牌還擁有自己的製帽機,另外在縫紉機方面他們還有1910年代的「無倒勾縫紉機」、1920年代的「勝家縫紉機」以及丹寧褲迷們熟悉的1930年代的「Union Special」,以便重現各個年代帽子的工法和細節。

Though THE H.W.DOG&CO. has a seemingly playful name, it might yet be the most dedicated hat maker from Japan. Before starting his own brand, Tsurumaki had worked for several Japanese hat brands and gained some hands-on experience in re-making vintage items. It came rather naturally that when he started THE H.W.DOG&CO., he decided to produce exquisite-quality hats that draw inspiration from the American and European workwear and functional military items from the 1940s-60s. The brand quickly gained ground and became a lauded figure in the fashion world.

Obviously it takes more than just perfect craftsmanship to make the brand a success, THE H.W.DOG&CO. enlists quality mold makers and sewing machines for their production; for example, they use the vintage sewing machines from the 1910s, the Singer sewing machines from the 1920s, and the Union Special sewing machines from the 1930s that are well known to the denim fans.


此外品牌還有另外一個有趣特色,就是在許多帽子商品的帽緣,都會釘上類似票根的一張紙,而且神奇的是不少人買來戴著後,都不願意拆掉這張紙「票根」,令我百思不得其解。後來翻閱到一些美國的老照片,才發現在20世紀初至中旬的美國人,很喜歡把例如是棒球賽的、火車票等的票根,釘在自己的帽子上頭以作紀念。這傳統的具體年代及原因雖然已經不可考,倒是很高興有像這樣的品牌。儘管現在的人只是因為潮流,而讓這張「票根」留在帽子上,但要不是THE H.W.DOG&CO.的話,這項在外國早已失落的傳統也不能重見天日,不會有街上漂亮的男男女女把票根頂在頭上。當想到這點的時候,就覺得真是個值得尊敬和拜服的品牌。

Another interesting thing about THE H.W.DOG&CO. is that some of their products come with a special feature — a paper ticket stub that is attached to the edge of the hat. In fact, I was puzzled by why people would keep that stub on when they wear the hat. It was later on when I came across some old photos of America that I found out, during the 1920s, the local Americans would sew ticket stubs from baseball games and train rides to their hats as a momento. Although the origin of this tradition is largely unknown and that most of the people who wear a hat with a ticket stub now are doing it merely for fashion, I am still glad and have much respect that there is a brand like THE H.W.DOG&CO. that is willing to take on the tradition.