A Monticristi® has a production timeline that could surpass ten months, starting from the buds harvest until it is placed in the final package. Our unique team of craftsmen goes through several processes and delicate steps until it has reached the finished product. The vegetable fiber needs to be pealed, cooked, and dried in the shade before the craftsmen start the art of weaving.
The weaving process of the hat skirt
In the weaving process of the hat skirt we can observe that the artisan is in a unique position to be able to shake the straw and give it a better finish. This is the most suited position for this step and its duration depends on the skills of the weaver who performs the art. This process can last up to 9 months depending on how fine the weave is.
The hat batters give the straw a better and more strength. This is a very delicate process where the artisan doing it has to be careful to not break the straw. This process takes around 15 to 30 minutes depending on the hat style.
Mussing the hat
This process is called muss the hat and it is performed with a shackle to cut the straws that are in all its surroundings to perfect the weave. This process can take hours.
Fuzzing the hat
This process is when the hat is about to end. Artisans fine-tune the hat to see if it has fuzz around the hat crown that needs to be cut. This process can take up to 30 minutes.
Ironing the hat
In this image we can see how the hat begins to be ironed to have the desired shape and more endurance.
After Ironing the hat
After ironing the hat we place it in the sun for around 2 hours and if there is no sun we place the hat for 6-7 hours in the mold.
Ancient Art Culture and History
It is believed that in order to bring into being, a concept of great value, its essence needs to be of exceptional significance.
The mastery of straw weaving evolved in the western part of South America, city of Montecristi, nearly 4000 BC. The technique of straw weaving was acquired by the Valdivia Culture. The valdi-vians guarded and passed on the secrets of such manufacturing through generations. The fascination with the exquisite raw material due to its functionality survived centuries, being carried on by the Spaniards and preserved sacredly, up until the contemporary times against all historical obstacles.
The procedure of conceiving a hat of a unique design commences in the remote and isolated tropical lands, deep into the forest in the middle of the world, where thick wilderness protects the plantation of this distinctive vegetable fiber. The additional oxygen that this region provides is necessary to cultivate the best straw. Hence, the settlement of the plantation of rich soil, right amount of moisture and cool air, plays a fundamental role in maintaining the unique climate necessary for its masterful creation.
Ideal environmental conditions and the knowledge to select carefully the leaves that will form a final art piece comprise the primary part of the creation. Meticulously skilled artists who understand the nature of this tropical plant are the artisans who specialize in the art of straw weaving. Their dedication to perfecting the method has been improved over ages. The highly qualified artisans blend their life long expertise, gifted technique, and diligent manipulation of the fiber to achieve the most exceptional result.
Spreading the knowledge throughout the world about the optimal excellence of the Toquilla Straw, its high fashioned products, and the ancient technique to prevent it from extinction are the primary objectives of the company. It is our intention to make the art of weaving recognizable internationally, fusing it with a touch of contemporary fashion to sustain its prestigious legacy.
The MontiCristi® Collection
Extra fino Monticristi® are the finest hats. There are only few people in the world with the unique skills to weave such pieces of art. There are only two people in the world who can weave hats 50 grade and up. These hats could take an elaboration time from 7 months to 10 months until it is placed in its final package. These hats go from 40 grades to 50 grades, and 50 grades hat being the finest of the finest.
Super fino Monticristi® hats are also very rare to find. These hats could take an elaboration time from 5 months to 7 months until it is placed in its final package. These hats go from 30 grades to 38 grades.
Fino Monticristi® hats also take a lot of dedication to finally get the grades desired. These hats could take an elaboration time from 3 months to 5 months until it is placed in its final package. These hats go from 24 grades to 28 grades.
Brisa Brisa Monticristi® hats also take a lot of dedication, however the threads are not too close from each other and the time to weave these hats is not as long as other fine hats. These hats could take an elaboration time from 2 months to 3 months until it is placed in its final package. These hats go from 20 grades to 22 grades.
Llano Monticristi® hats as any other Monticristi® also take a lot of dedication, the threads are even more separated than the Brisa, but its exclusivity remains implacable. These hats could take an elaboration time from 2 weeks to 2 months until it is placed in its final package. These hats go from 14 grades to 18 grades.