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Introducing Ecua-Andino authentic Panama hats, now in-stock at Nepenthes New York.

This time, Nepenthes New York collaborates with Ecuador-based Ecua-Andino, printing the Nepenthes New York logo on the inner band of each hat. Constructed from the leaves of the jipijapa palm, this one-of-a-kind headwear is famed for its lightness and breathability, and comes in two varieties - Classic Panama and Hippie.

Ecua-Andino traces their history back to 1985, when founders Alejandro Lecaro and Édgar Sánchez began selling their products on the beaches of Guayaquil, before opening up a small shop in the city center. In fact, Alejandro met Engineered Garments Daiki Suzuki at a tradeshow in Las Vegas during the early 90’s. These old acquaintances now reunite nearly 30 years later.

Each hat is woven by hand, requiring hours of labor, but leaving behind a distinctly human touch in the weave, making unique diamond patterns on the Classic Panama, and an irregular brick-like design on the Hippie Hat.

Stylish and easy to pair with summer outfits, these hats are a source of pride and cultural heritage within Ecuador.

The term “Panama Hat” is a misnomer. These hats actually originate from Ecuador, where a rich tradition of woven hats has existed for hundreds of years, evolving into today’s modern shape after the arrival of Spanish colonists. Some say American President Theodore Roosevelt coined the name when donned that hat while travelling to inspect the Panama Canal.

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