The elegance of the famous hats worn by many celebrities is the result of great craftsmanship

On April 4th, 1857, in Alessandria, Giuseppe Borsalino, with the help of his brother Lazzaro, opened the ‘Borsalino Giuseppe & fratello spa‘. At the time he was only 23, but he had already been working for over 10 years and obtained certifications in France. His taste, creativity, incredible know-how, and the quality of his products transformed the dream of a young artisan into a real industry. Today, ‘Borsalino‘, as it has been renamed over the years, is the oldest Italian company specializing in the manufacture of luxury hats.

Borsalino’s success was such that, in the early 1900s, most people in Europe and the US wore a hat made in Alessandria.

And the term ‘Borsalino’ was entered in the Oxford Dictionary as “common name of wide-brimmed felt hat.”

This referred to the most popular Borsalino’s model with dimples in the top part that facilitates the grip to remove the hat. This became a must for many Hollywood stars. Indeed, one of the most iconic images of Borsalino’s hats is that of Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman in the final scene of ‘Casablanca’. However, they appeared in countless other productions worn by Robert Redford, Nicole Kidman, Marcello Mastroianni, Greta Garbo, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Marlene Dietrich, and many others. In 2013, also Tony Servillo wore one in the Oscar-winning ‘The Great Beauty’. The company even granted the use of its name to 2 cult films in the 1970s: ‘Borsalino’ and ‘Borsalino & Co.’.

Elegant, unique, and with an unmistakable allure, the Borsalino hat is the result of great craftsmanship work. Each felt hat that comes out of the Alessandria manufacturing plant goes through a process of 52 steps performed by hand in seven weeks. While the straw hats are woven in the heart of the Ecuadorean mountains, at 2,550 meters above sea level, in the city of Cuenca.

Up to six months may be required to weave just one of these hats.


Ilona Catani Scarlett

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