Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Hidden treasure in Buffalo
I met Bob out for lunch on the East Side in Buffalo. *flashes gang sign* It was the BEST sub sandwich I have had in a LONG time. It's always nice to spend time with the great and wonderful Bobby as well.
Since we were on the East Side, I wanted to stop in a local hat maker's shop.. one of the few places left in the country that still makes custom hats. Bob went along with me.. I was driving, so he had no choice. Ha Ha. What I thought would be a quick visit turned into an hour stay as Gary White (owner and master hatter) showed me around his store and described all the details of making hats. Being a huge hat freak.. I was mesmerized. It was a step back into time, into a true master's workshop.
Gary was so friendly, personable, and I loved his stories. He's been in the business for thirty years now, and hat making is his passion. He's made hats for movies like Indiana Jones and won Tony awards as part of the costume crew for Broadway plays like Thoroughly Modern Milly and Guys and Dolls, to name a few.
Yes, I did place an order for a hat, which should be ready in early October. It was SO cool to be designing my own hat.. style, size, brim length, color etc. It was so much fun, and Gary was so nice to work with. As informal as our conversations were, he kept calling me "Sir", and treated me like I was his favorite client. He has a wonderful work ethic, and is an overall charming man.