Short brim toquilla straw hat made in Cuenca. Though toquilla straw hats are known worldwide as Panama Hats, these are original of Ecuador. The art of weaving goes back to the XVI century, when native artisans elaborated accessories to protect the noblemen from the equatorial sun.
The palm, from which the toquilla straw is obtained, grows in the coastal highlands of Ecuador, a subtropical and humid region. After a long artisanal process, the palm is transformed into delicate threads to form the finest hats in the world.