Hats, no doubt, are one of the most prominent fixtures in the streetwear universe. Like the t-shirt, caps find their way to most every line sheet and offer simple canvas for brand identity formation. While several types garner respect (from the mesh backed trucker to the 5-panel) the fitted is king. For style and comfort, hard to beat. Also, for shear availability of design space, its the most versatile.

With firm connection to baseball, the fitted hat also screams AMERICA. Not literally, obviously, but there is that undeniable connection. And so, the fitted hat serves as a great entry point for discussing a wonderful rising trend in the industry. Locally made product. Against the tide of globalization, some brands take pride in assuring that their goods are hand and American made, a throwback to traditional manufacture.

Being interested in both hats and American made things, I caught up with Brett Wiley from Estate LA. Estate makes fitted caps in Los Angeles, CA and works with some of the bigger names in action sports (as well as a few of your favorite streetwear brands). Brett and I discussed hats (no surprise), brand building and NASCAR. He was nice enough to allow me to fulfill a dream of conducting an interview via instant messenger. Along with the rest of the Estate crew, we began to answer some of my questions.
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