Summer Headwear feat. Alex Mroz

July 18th, 2013

Chicago native Alex Mroz is the manager of the Goorin Bros. hat shop on Bleecker Street in NYC. Needless to say, the guy knows a thing or two about how to wear a hat.

“Goorin Bros. is a family owned hat company dating back to 1895. Currently in their fourth generation of family ownership, the company was exclusively a wholesale brand, until Ben Goorin decided to open his first retail store in hometown San Francisco in 2006.  The success of that store inspired Ben to invest in opening more shops in neighborhoods across the country and try to reignite the hat shop as a common sight as it had been for so many decades prior to the 1960’s.

Being my own boss, I can dress as high or low as I want, but I believe in dressing in a way that is seasonably comfortable and appropriate for the social functions of the day and evening.

My coworkers throughout Goorin are also an influence. Style at its’ most fun is a call and response, and the team and I have a lot of fun trying to push each other’s game. Of course, working on Bleecker street in the West Village, our clients’ style is always an inspiration as well!”

Here’s three examples of Alex’s summer style, headwear and all.

    1. Create Your Own Shade


    “New Orleans is a big influence on my summer style. I was there in July of 2011 to help open our first store there, and in the sweltering heat and heavy humidity I finally understood the pure functionality of the wide brimmed straw hat. Up until that time, I had worn a lot of stingy brimmed straw hats, fashion pieces, as I call them.  Nothing wrong with them, of course, in a summer climate like the West coast. But in the South, you need sun protection and you need to create your own shade.

    New Orleans also inspired some Dandyish color in my style.  In that town, men are not afraid to wear some LOUD prints and patterns, along with great colors and formal layers of linen, cotton and seersucker.

    As Dan has said in the past, the panama hat can be surprisingly versatile. It’s a shame so many man are intimidated by the wide brimmed hats our Grandfathers and Great-Grandfathers wore every day.  To ease the wide ‘feel’, start playing with angles and tilts….as Sinatra said: Angles are attitude!”


    “The signet ring was a gift from a few summers ago.  I was intimidated to wear it for a long while, but as we grow older and our fashion sense grows with us, sometimes we are ready for pieces we once thought were ‘not for us’.

    Being aware that so much of my summer wardrobe in NYC was stripped down, heading into this year I decided to invest in some man-jewelry for the first time.  Taking this signet ring to get it engraved with my initials inspired a nice introduction to jewelry from the fine folks at In God We Trust, and I ended up walking away with the simple leather and brass bracelet in look 2. Perhaps in a year or two I’ll have five fingers full of rings, perhaps not, but this pinky ring is where it started…”


    “I cannot say enough about these walnut captoes. They were the most expensive shoes I owned at the time I got them, and they still look great today with just about any of my wardrobe staples regardless of the season.

    Invest in high quality pieces that work with a wide range in your wardrobe and the price you paid for them seems more worth it every time you wear them, I guarantee it.”


    2. Go-To Gatsby Cap


    “Nothing helps deal with the reality of New York subway platforms in the summer (which is the closest things to recreating New Orleans humidity) better than linen. Some darting added by Franklin at TheTailoringRoom (thanks Dan) helped snug up the silhouette of this linen shirt, so it looks fantastic when tucked in as well – not too billowy.

    This hat is my everyday go to. It’s an 8 panel linen ‘Gatsby’ cap, made by hand in the last standing cut-and-sew hat factory in America, located right over the river in Newark, New Jersey. Last year I bought it in two colors; this navy one and a light grey. From those two hats I learned the lesson that if you’re going to go with linen, go darker in color to hide sweat stains.”


    “Don’t be afraid to ask the professionals to help teach you, whether you’re buying hats, shoes, jewelry, suits, etc.

    If you got to places that care about their quality and craftsmanship, they will be knowledgeable and will be more than happy to explain the value of their products. With craftsmanship comes passion; let the pros share their passion and knowledge with you.”


    “The shoes are from Oak Street Bootmakers, a Chicago company that designs Maine-made shoes. I owned a pair of boat shoes last year, but, being on my feet all the time, wanted something that looked similar but with a little more support. These vibram soled oxford trails hit the spot…I could walk for days in these babies.

    It’s from owning quality hats and shoes like these that I’ve really come to understand and appreciate how investing in quality, versatile pieces is the smartest way to build a wardrobe.”


    3. City Safari


    “This is a weekend at home and it’s July hot kind of outfit.

    I detested shorts for years, but again, the New York humidity forced my hand into more temperate comfort. These Brooklyn Circus linen numbers were my first entry back into the shorts game in many years.

    Again, all about comfort.  The super thin henley is a year-round essential that works as a layering piece in the colder months or a striped-down basic as seen here.  I think a well-fitting henley lends a very masculine look and is a nice alternative to the t-shirt.”


    “This safari fedora is from the Grenadier Line; our outdoor specific hats. It’s made in that same cut-and-sew hat factory in Newark.

    The body is linen and lined in cotton – making it waterproof and easily packable. This is the perfect traveling hat and it will look better and better as it gets beaten up.”


    “The PF Flyers are more Brooklyn Circus inspiration. I love a simple, clean canvas sneaker for the summer and I think the PF Flyers offer a choice that you don’t see every day like the Chuck Taylors…plus their comfort beats Chucks any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

    Thanks, Ouigi!”


    Thanks, as always, for reading and special thanks to Alex for participating!

    Yours in style,

    Articles of Style


    Photography by Alex Crawford

    • http://undefined Jason P

      Do you gents have any tips for someone with a big head? I wear a size 7 5/8 fitted hat and I’ve been told the hats like Alex wears above aren’t a good look for me. Any thoughts?

      • http://undefined Alex

        Hi Jason,

        a 7 5/8 is going to be an XL in Goorin hats. I would argue that the hats worn above wouldn’t look good due to your facial shape rather than the size of your head. By that I mean, I hear from large-headed men all the time that they think hats make their head look huge. Really, it depends on the shape and the width of the brim. I would stop by one of our shops and try on as many shapes as possible. The hat in look 2 and the ones in the flatcap family are going to look good on you in some shape: i gaurentee it. Those hats have been worn by all types of men for the last century at least, and for good reason. The are the most-widely flattering.

        If you need any additional help, email me

        Hope this helps.

    • Brent Kuz

      Great post! I have a few “cabbie” hats. One in a great dongle tweed, chambray. I could use one in linen! I need to expand to a wide brim Panama hat!

    • Samantha

      Dan, your blog is great, but it would look so much more professional if you had someone edit your spelling/grammar/punctuation. I spot mistakes in every post!

    • http://undefined TimL

      I love hats… I just have a hard time getting the right one for my bean.

      Looke # 3
      “The body is linen and lined in cotton – making it waterproof and easily packable. This is the perfect traveling hat and it will look better and better as it gets beaten up.”

      –totally agree, great casual looking hat to go anywhere.

    • theKacar

      The linen hat and look in #2 is my favorite. Clean with splash of orange. Good post TSB.

    • Ian in Dallas

      Does anyone have some tips on reshaping a brim? I bought a Panama hat but I was careless (read: drunk) and it got squashed under some suitcases. The crown is still great, but the brim has some undesirable creases now.

      • Alex

        Bring it to any Goorin Bros. shop if you have one near you, or call your local hat dealer and see if they have a steamer. Reshaping is not too tough, just requires a garment steamer, some work gloves, and patience. See if you have a local hat store that can do this for you.

        • Ian in Dallas

          a late response, but many thanks!! I’m going to look into this.

    • John B

      I’m leaning towards hats this summer and this post definitely gave me a few ideas!

    • Theguybehindthelens

      Another killer post guys. I tend to wear a hat almost everyday. The panama hat in the fist look is done in a perfect color and the brim is just the width I like.

    • cam

      thanks for the lead on oak street bootmakers…ive been looking for a quality camp moc made in the usa and oak street’s look to be a bit more stylish than quoddy and rancourt

      • Herbert Morrison

        They been around from time bud (hashtag menswear famous)…I’m surprised you’ve never heard of Oak Street?

      • Alex

        Can’t speak to quoddy but Rancourt makes a great product as well. Oak Street won me over though through their comfort and their outstanding customer service. If you decide to go with a pair, I highly reccomend calling Independence, which is their brick and mortar store in Chicago. They’ll be able to help you with fit questions and the shipping cost is the exact same as if you ordered from their website.

    • http://undefined MtlFer

      Great post. I enjoy wearing hats but I find that, when combined with glasses (not sunglasses), it makes for a very busy look. Is this an opinion shared by others or am I just being too picky? Also, are there styles of hats that better lend themselves to be worn with glasses?

      • Jeremy Whitechick

        Justin Doss.

      • Alex

        MTLFer, I wear glasses too(wearing contacts in all three looks, obviously), but hats and frames definitely work together. Just keep the hat a solid and classic in shape. If your glasses frames are rather loud, tone down the hat. Jeremy provided a really great example of Justin Doss who, in a google search, is wearing a hat with frames everywhere. Go with a nice solid color that works with a wide range of your warddrobe and it shouldn’t be too busy with your glasses…..unless you’re wearing Elton John glasses. Then we’ll have to figure something else out.

        • http://undefined MtlFer

          Thanks so much for the reply, Alex. Really appreciate it.

    • Joe

      Great piece. It’s amazing how different his look is with a change of hat. While I typically favor fedoras and panamas myself (especially straw ones during the summer), the coppola, or gatsby hat, in the second look really flatters his face and I think is the best look in the bunch, he almost looks like a different person in this look. The bright pants and untucked linen don’t hurt either.

    • Bob

      One fedora per crew…

      Adam: No, I’m pretty sure the more fedoras, the better. ‘Cause I look like I’m in a ska band right now. Like I’m in Reel Big Fish.

      Blake: Adam, I beg to differ. We’re not a house full of cubans, man. We’re white dudes. We gotta be careful. ‘Cause we can be very unfashionable very quickly.

      • Francois

        One of the best Workaholic-quotes ever! Nice style by the way!

        Best regards