How Hats Are Made? Visiting Polkap.

When we were introducing hats to our offer, we really wanted them to be produced by Polkap from Skoczów - a local company based in Silesia, in our opinion the best hatmakers in Poland.


Photos: Radosław Kaźmierczak

Unlike other hat manufacturers in Poland, Polkap is responsible for their hat production process from beginning to end, from fibre to finished hat - their felt hats, both those from wool and rabbit fur, are made of raw materials processed on site.

Some time ago we visited their factory in Skoczów to see with our own eyes how our hats are made. On this occasion, with the help of Radek Kaźmierczak, we captured a few photos to describe and show you how precise and complicated the whole process is and how much manual work goes into every hat made. Welcome.

Mieszanie wyczesów - wilk

Mixing fur with wool - the machine is called wilk, a polish word for wolf.

Tył zgrzeblarki

The rear of zgrzeblarka  - preparing wool.

Tył zgrzeblarki

Przód zgrzeblarki

The side view of the mechanism and the front of the machine. This machine is responsible for cleaning and combing wool.

Nawijanie wełny

Spinning the wool...

Nawijanie na stożek

...and straight on a cone, with a help of the winder.


Zespalarka  - the machine that is responsible for the first step of the hatmaking process, fusing together the fibres of rabbit or hare fur.


Zwartniarka  - connecting the elements with high water temperature.

Zwartniarka - pompa

Pump releasing the excess amount of water.


Process of wet felting.


Jak powstają kapelusze

In the wet felting process, hot water is applied to layers of animal hairs, while repeated agitation and compression causes the fibers to hook together or weave together into a single piece of fabric. Wrapping the properly arranged fiber in a sturdy, textured material, such as a bamboo mat or burlap, will speed up the felting process. The felted material may be finished by fulling. 


Steaming the hat-to-made to make it softer, easier to shape by hand.

Ręczne formowanie kapelusza


Brakarnia - sortowanie kapeluszy

Jumping for a moment to the further stage. In the background you can see the so-called brakarnia  - a place where semi-finished products are graded 1st or 2nd class and sorted.

Prasowanie stożka


But before that we have to go back to the earlier stage - raw wool cones are pressed using the special presser.

Gotowy stożek z włosia

Wyprasowany i niewyprasowany stożek

You can see the pressed ones on the right and the raw ones on the left.

Jak się robi kapelusze

Ready for the next stages of the hatmaking process.

opalanie kapelusza

Burning the excess fibres to even the hat's surface.

Formowanie kapelusza fedora

Shaping the hat to achieve the desired shaped. In our case, it is the classic fedora.

Formowanie kapelusza

Shaping the hat.


Aparaty ciśnieniowe

The dyeing facility and pressure chambers, where the hats are dyed.


Grinding the surface to achieve the desired texture.

Parowanie ronda kapelusza

Steaming the hat again to soften the brim before final shaping.

Formowanie ronda

Maszyna do rańdowania kaplina

The machine that is responsible for preparing the brim.

Prasy piaskowe i drewniane ronda

Presses and wooden brims on which the hats are shaped.

Szwalnia kapelusze

Sewing room - a place where the linings are sewn in and the hats are finished and decorated.

Maszyna do wszywania wstążek i pasków

Sewing machine.

Lamowanie ronda kapelusza

Trimming the brim's edge.

Zdobienie filcowego kapelusza

Decorating the hat according to the customers' needs.

Parowanie filcowego kapelusza

Steaming the hat again just to clean it. After that step, it is finally ready to be packed.


Ready hats are stored on special racks...

Kapelusze gotowe do wysyłki

...waiting to be packed and shipped.

Jak powstają kapelusze - wizyta w Polkap Skoczów

This is the end of the whole process. We hope that you have already learned how hats are made! We would like to thank the Polkap factory for showing us around their factory and for the cooperation.

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