How to add a leather sweatband into your hat

Have an old worn-out or cracked sweatband in your beloved hat? Looking to give your hat a more premium feel and quality? A premium leather sweatband will do just the trick.

The sweatbands found in Panama or wool felt hats could vary from leather to cotton fabric. However, looking into the more premium or vintage hats you’ll see that they are stitched with leather sweatbands, as it was the original material of choice.

Some of the benefits of leather sweatbands:

  1. Retains size and shape of the hat (sturdier than fabric and won’t warp as easily)
  2. Leather indicates Quality
  3. Lasts longer (won’t wear out as easily as fabric)
  4. Protects hat and blocks sweat from soaking through (prevent stains and wear to the straw/felt)

Before replacing your current sweatband you’ll need the following:

Replace the old band

(Hat used to demonstrate: English Optimo)

Carefully remove the existing sweatband by cutting the threads sewn into the hat.

Remove the plastic covering the adhesive squares.

Insert the sweatband into the hat; make sure to line up the vertical seam line with the back center of the hat. Also precisely align the black leather portion of the sweatband with the edge, where the inner brim meets the inner crown. Once placed correctly, press the sweatband against the hat to bond the adhesive, while also smoothing it out so that it lays flat.


Although the adhesive may be sufficient enough to keep it in the hat, an extra step you can take to secure the sweatband is to sew it directly to the straw.

Take your needle and thread, insert the needle between the reed (the black leather-wrapped wire) and the edge of the sweatband. Push the needle all the way through to the outside of that hat.

After the needle has gone fully through, reinsert it into the crown next to the hole that it came out of. Make sure it pushes through to the area between the reed and the sweatband.

Once the needle is all the way through, once again reinsert it through, making a new hole next to where it came through.

The needle should again come all the way out to the outer crown. Repeat the same process, inserting it again, creating a new hole for the thread to go through.

Stitches should be visible on the outside of the hat when done correctly. You may repeat the process to create more stitches, depending on the amount of secureness you’d like. You could do a series of spread-out stitches similar to the one above, or you could go around the entire hat for maximum security.

That’s it! Your hat now has a brand new premium leather sweatband. Again, you can purchase one directly from our website. Remember that it is very key to order the correct size for your hat, so make sure to accurately provide us your size!


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