In most cultures, your clothing indicates your social status and the occasion. This hat, called a “kat,” would be worn by Korean men during the Joseon Kingdom (1392-1910). A man’s outfit wasn’t complete unless he was wearing this piece. Men of all statuses wore these hats, from the nobles to ordinary people.
Until a man reached manhood and got married, they wore their hair in a long braid down their back. Then they cut their hair and wore it in a high bun, which fit perfectly underneath this hat. A horsehair headband would be worn around the forehead, with this smaller brimless cap on top over the top knot. This smaller hat could be worn in the homes of friends, or on the streets. Then, the brimmed hat would be placed on top.
This hat is made of horsehair, specifically the long hairs from a horse’s tail. The inner cap appears to be also made of some metallic wires, and overall the piece is in good condition and includes a custom stand.
Circa: 19th century
Material: Horsehair and metal wire
Condition: Very Good
Dimensions: 7" opening
Inventory number: WR3973