Straw hats can be made from various materials, including natural and synthetic fibers. Here are some of the most common types of straw materials used in hat making:


1. Raffia

Raffia, with its exotic and mysterious feel, only comes from Madagascar in Africa. The price of imported grass is expensive, and it is recognized by the western market because of its strong tree quality and extraordinary character. The grass is smooth on the outside and refreshing on the inside, not afraid of water and extremely strong. Therefore, it is also regarded as a love grass by people, implying that people should treat love consistently and steadfastly.
The grass has been woven into a kind of ornament with national characteristics. In addition, a wishing rope is tied on the Longevity Pine, which can pray for the father’s well-being, peace for the family, and health for the children: lovers give each other wishing ropes, Used to wrap around the wrists of both parties, indicating that the lovers will never change their hearts.

This high-end straw is hand-woven and used to create some of the world’s most coveted hats, including the traditional Panama Hat. The hand-woven nature of this material means that no two hat bodies are ever identical, making each hat a truly unique work of art.

  • Raffia is a type of straw that is used in making hats. Here are some key things to know about raffia for hat making:
  • Raffia is a resilient straw made from palm leaves found in the tropics of Africa.
  • Raffia hat bodies are available for purchase and can be used as a base for creating a hat.
  • Raffia can also be purchased in braided form and used to create a hat from scratch.
  • Raffia hats are sustainable and eco-friendly, as they are made from a natural material.
  • Raffia hats can be made in different styles and colors, depending on the weaves and dyeing techniques used.*
  • Raffia hats are lightweight and breathable, making them perfect for warm weather

*Notes: the meaning inside () for different raffia colors:
Black (academic), Light green (meet noble people)
Dark green (wealth), Blue (career)
Red (love), Golden yellow (transfer)
Colorful (healthy good mood), White (family affection)
Brown (intelligent tailoring), Purple (friendship)

raffia straw material for straw hat making ()

2. Toyo

A lightweight and flexible material made from cellulose fiber and nylon that are joined together in a tightly braided fashion. The combination of materials makes it durable and resistant to wear and tear.

Toyo straw is a type of shiny smooth straw made chiefly in Japan with shellacked rice paper. This material is commonly used for straw hats and fedoras.

Hats woven from this material are smooth and lightweight, and are often an off-white or golden copper color.[citation needed] The rice paper is coated with shellac, cellophane, or a plastic glaze. Machine-made toyo straw hats are generally sold in the medium to low price range.

3. Wheat Straw

A natural and eco-friendly material that is lightweight and breathable. It is often used in the production of summer hats due to its ability to keep the head cool. Here’re some main features of wheat straw material for hat making:

Wheat straw is a by-product of wheat harvesting and is often burned as waste.
Straw braided strips are hand-braided with wheat stalks and then processed into caps with specifications as 1.5cm, 1.2cm, 1.0.
Wheat straw is gluten-free, making it safe for those with gluten allergies to use.
Wheat straw is available in different forms, including craft straw, black straw, and wheat stalks.
Wheat straw is easy to shape and difficult to sew. It is often used to make cheaper hats, as it is hard-wearing and if stiffened, hard to the touch, and has the smell of corn.

wheat straw material for hat making ()

4. Paper Straw

A synthetic material made from paper that is coated with resin to make it strong and durable. It is often used as a cheaper alternative to natural straw materials.

4.1 Paper straw cloth

Cloth made of paper. Paper cloth is paper cloth made from recycled kraft paper and other paper materials. Paper cloth can be divided into different types according to its production materials and weaving styles. Paper rope paper cloth includes: single-knot straw paper cloth, retro environmentally friendly paper cloth, golden paper cloth, gold paper cloth, silver paper cloth , gold thread paper cloth, raffia paper cloth, washed paper cloth, striped paper cloth and coated paper cloth. Each category is dyed in a variety of colors using professional dyeing equipment.

As its production process continues to improve, paper cloth has more characteristics. For example, waterproof, moisture-proof, and anti-committee characteristics are all indispensable characteristics of the new paper cloth. In addition, paper cloth has another The biggest feature is that it is a very environmentally friendly material. It is made of imported kraft paper and other paper materials, so it can be recycled and reused without causing pollution to the environment and saving resources. Paper straw fabric mainly have three different types based on the difference of its woven methods.

a) Monofilament
b) Lala grass
c) Herringbone pattern

4.2 Paper straw rope

Paper straw rope is a rope that is cut into strips and twisted mechanically or manually. It is a branch of the rope. Paper rope is mainly used in packaging products, such as paper bags, gift binding, and product packaging. Although paper rope is made of paper, this paper rope can be recycled and made into paper. This is a product that can be recycled. Paper rope is definitely more environmentally friendly than traditional rope. The production of traditional ropes with polluting materials such as nylon, PP, chemical fiber, and plastic not only pollutes the environment, but also endangers health. Therefore, using paper rope can not only reduce pollution, but also maintain good health.

4.3 Paper braids

Paper ropes are braided into braids and then made into paper debate hats.

4.4. Paper braid + PP silk


5. pp straw — (waterproof)

Polypropylene is a thermal grease made from the polymerization of propylene.

Polypropylene has high crystallinity and regular structure, so it has excellent mechanical properties. Non-toxic, tasteless, low density, strength, stiffness, hardness and heat resistance are better than low-pressure dyeing, and can be used at around 100C. It has good dielectric properties, high-frequency insulation and is not affected by humidity, but it becomes brittle at low temperature, not wear-resistant, and easy to age. Suitable for making general mechanical parts, corrosion-resistant parts and insulating parts. Common organic solvents such as acids and solvents have almost no effect on it and can be used in tableware.

6. Salt grass

Salt grass is a type of plant fiber that is used for making straw hats. The hat-making process involves weaving the salt grass fibers into an intricate pattern, which is then softened either in hot water or steam. Salt grass is also sometimes used in the production of Panama hats.

The growth period of salt grass is about six months, and it can be harvested twice a year. The purchase price depends on the length and specifications. The price of long grass is better, and the price of short grass is worse. Long braided straw mats, straw hats or poplar couches Rice, the short ones are used to weave straw bags, straw bags or green vegetables; even the May Festival rice dumplings must use weed grass. After the first harvest, the cut grass roots will continue to sprout and grow. This second time, not only saves the labor of farming, but also grows stronger and more durable grass.

Adult grass is also called triangular grass because the entire grass stem is in the shape of an equilateral triangle from the root to the top. The root grain is thin at the top. The bladder-shaped part in the middle of the triangle stores a lot of water, so it needs to be split when cutting. Then the stalls are lined up in the field and exposed to the sun. After a few days, the color of the salty grass changes from green to golden, and it is ready to be sold. Because the straw mat is cheap, strong in toughness, not easy to break, and can absorb sweat and ventilate. Compared with The nylon mat is much cooler and more comfortable. In addition, the Japanese have a special liking for the taiyang rice made of saltgrass. They are particularly fond of it and it is still exported to Japan.

7. Hollow grass

Hollow grass is a type of plant fiber that is used for making straw hats. The hat-making process involves weaving the hollow grass fibers into an intricate pattern, which is then softened either in hot water or steam

8. Bullrush straw

Bullrush is a type of plant fiber that can be used for making straw hats. It is listed as one of the raw materials for making straw hats on some hat-making supply websites. However, it is not as commonly used as other materials such as wheat straw, salt grass, raffia, mat grass, and hollow grass

Bullrush straw hats

9.Mat grass

Mat grass is a type of natural grass that is used for making straw hats. The hat-making process involves weaving the mat grass fibers into an intricate pattern, which is then softened either in hot water or steam. It is commonly known as lamp grass, is a perennial grassland along the river. The stem is upright, solitary and thin columnar, with degenerated nodes and leaves, and the stem is filled with white energy core, firm and elastic, suitable for weaving mats.

10. Hemp

A natural fiber that is extracted from the fiber banana. It is often used in the production of hats due to its durability and resistance to wear and tear.

11. Seagrass

A natural material that is often used in the production of summer hats due to its ability to keep the head cool. It is also durable and resistant to wear and tear.

12. Sinamay

A type of flat straw that is sold by the yard/meter. It is the most common type of flat straw and comes in a huge variety of colors. It also comes in different qualities or grades, with a closer, denser weave being better than a looser or more uneven weave.

13. Abailk silk straw

Abailk silk straw is a type of straw fabric used for hat making. It is made of 100% raw silk on the weft and 100% abaca fiber on the waft, which is very evenly and tightly woven, and is soft and luxurious to the touch. Abailk silk straw is one of the straw fabrics available for hat making, along with Buntal Jinsin Straw, Polyhem Straw, Raffia Polyester Straw, and Sinamay Straw. It is also used in needlepoint and surface embroidery on. Abailk silk straw is hand-dyed and hand-painted, and is quickly becoming a favorite stitching fiber for needlepoint and surface embroidery.

14. Polyhem straw

Polyhem straw is a synthetic straw material that is made from a blend of polyester and polypropylene. It is lightweight, durable, and easy to shape, making it a popular choice for hat making.

15. Buntal Jinsin Straw

Buntal Jinsin Straw is a mix of buntal straw and polyester thread. Buntal is a natural fiber that comes from the Philippines and is created from the stalks of unopened leaves of the talipot palm tree. Buntal Jinsin Straw is often used for making hats, particularly sculptural hats for racing events.

16. Mexico Palm Straw

Known for its strength and flexibility, allowing it to be woven into intricate designs and patterns while still maintaining its shape.

17. Toquilla

a high-end straw used to create some of the world’s most coveted hats, including the traditional Panama Hat.
Toquilla straw is made from fibers from a palm tree that is characteristic of the Ecuadorian coast.
The weaving of Toquilla straw hats is a traditional craft that has been passed down for centuries in Ecuador and is recognized by UNESCO as an intangible cultural heritage.
Weaving a Toquilla straw hat can take from one day to eight months, depending on the quality and finesse.
Toquilla straw hats are also known as Panama hats, although they are actually made in Ecuador.
Toquilla straw hats come in a variety of styles, including fedoras, planter hats, and classic Panama hats.

18.Shantung straw

Shantung straw is made from a high-performance paper that is rolled into a yarn to imitate straw. Shantung straw is much more durable than natural straw and is a popular choice for hat making. Shantung straw hats are available in a variety of styles, including cowboy hats, fedoras, and planter hats