Traditional straw hat from the Philippines
The Buntal Hat is a traditional straw hat made from fibres taken from the petioles of buri palm leaves. It is a traditional hat from the Philippines and a major export from there in the first half of the 20th century.
Buntal Hats are typically worn by farmers working in the fields. Additionally, they can be worn with both casual and semi-formal barong tagalog attire. Baliwag, Bulacan, and (historically) Sariaya and Tayabas in Quezon Province are its primary production centres.
Balibuntal hats, a portmanteau of “Baliwag” and “buntal,” are another name for Buntal Hats made in Baliwag. They are considered to be of a higher quality than other kinds of Buntal Hats.
For the domestic Philippino market, Buntal Hats were traditionally woven into wide-brimmed farmer’s hats. Later versions of the hat use softer fibers and a finer weave to create a fedora-like shape. These hats are often sold under the names Bangkok Hat or Panama Hat, which are very similar to each other. The texture of these versions is silkier than that of Panama Hats, making them durable yet light. It can also be woven into other forms, such as the Baliwag Hat, a women’s braided sun hat with a wide brim that is named after the town of Baliwag. The Parabuntal Hat, the East Indian Panama Hat, and the Italian Straw Hat are all variations of the Buntal Hat.
Other names and variants of the Buntal Hat
- Bangkok Hat
- Panama Hat
- Parabuntal Hat
- East Indian Panama Hat
- Italian Straw Hat
- Baliwag Hat