Then, they sew the strands in concentric circles with a sewing machine to form the hat. Some hats are left with their natural straw color, and some are dyed with either synthetic dyes for bright colors or natural dyes for earthy tones.
The Huasco styles range from the traditional wide-brimmed rigid rims to an Indiana Jones inspired hat! The very fine, flexible and most special hats were priced at $90,000 Chilean pesos - about $200 USD.
The coolest part about the visit was seeing that traditional forms of artisanship still thrive in their respective localities. On the way to and from the workshop, we saw men on the side of the road or in the fields wearing the hats - a mark of rural Chilean culture that still lives strong.