This page contains links to products. If you click through and buy, Shark Tank Blog may receive a commission

The Birth of Hood Hat

hood hatIn the bustling city of Los Angeles, Max Nelson, a real estate mogul, found himself on a quest for simplicity in the form of a baseball cap. This journey led him to create Hood Hat, a brand that’s quickly carving out a niche for itself with its 100% Merino wool caps.

Max’s story began with a renovation project in Brentwood and a desire for a sun-shielding hat devoid of flashy logos. His search ended with a modest $6 cap from a local store, which he transformed into a personalized Brentwood emblem through a small-scale manufacturer.

The Genesis of Hood Hat

This could have been the end of the road for Max’s hat-making adventure, but a chance encounter at a Sid Mashburn store propelled it forward. A conversation with an admiring salesman sparked the idea to swap the cap’s synthetic blend for pure wool. Max’s pursuit for the perfect wool fabric led him to New York, where he crafted a new Brentwood cap that felt leagues above the original.

The intersection of Max’s real estate career and his burgeoning hat business created a unique synergy. His colleagues began purchasing the caps as distinctive closing gifts, a refreshing alternative to the conventional bottle of champagne.

Rapper’s Delight

The Hood Hat brand gained momentum when Jay-Z, a titan of rap and business, was seen sporting a Bel Air cap from Hood Hat’s collection. This moment of celebrity endorsement highlighted the brand’s appeal and its connection to Los Angeles culture. Hood Hat’s initial line featured ten iconic neighborhoods, each cap telling the story of its respective locale.

Designer Max Nelson then turned to his New York heritage, crafting a collection that paid tribute to the boroughs of his youth. He drew inspiration from the nostalgic snapbacks of the early ’90s, aiming to create luxurious ball caps that allowed individuals to proudly represent their cherished places.

The brand’s evolution continued as it responded to celebrity influence. Rapper YG requested a “Bompton” cap, while Wu-Tang Clan’s Raekwon asked for a “Park Hill” design. Hood Hat’s collection transcends mere fashion; it’s a narrative woven into the fabric of each hat.

Custom Hats

Hood Hat also offers a customization service, providing a plethora of styles, fabrics, and colors for customers to craft their own unique hats. Additionally, the brand features pre-designed hats that celebrate various states and sports teams, catering to a wide range of preferences and loyalties.

In essence, Hood Hat is more than just a cap; it’s a statement piece that embodies personal stories and communal pride. Max Nelson’s creation has not only filled a gap in the market but has also stitched together the threads of his professional life in an unexpected and harmonious way.

My Take on Hood Hat

I own over 100 baseball caps in a variety of materials. I even have a few Merino wool fitted caps. Max’s hats look cool and I like the customization feature. Their sports hats aren’t licensed, they’re merely in team colors with the city on it in a similar logo style. My friend would like the “Bills Mafia” hats he has. I’d probably get a HoodHat for a gift for someone but I just don’t buy hats for myself anymore.

Do Sharks Wear Hats?

While Max has built a good business, there’s really nothing proprietary about it. I’m pretty sure Michael Rubin won’t make an offer – he’s already in the hat business – BIG TIME. Mr. Wonderful could craft a royalty offer. These hats cost $70 and up so I’m sure there are big margins. As for Barbara and Lori – I think they’ll go out. That leaves Mark and I am not sure about what he’ll do.

About Rob Merlino

Entrepreneur, auteur, raconteur. Rob Merlino is a blogger and writer who enjoys the Shark Tank TV show and Hot Dogs. A father of five who freelances in a variety of publications, Rob has a stable of websites including Shark Tank Blog, Hot Dog Stories, Rob and more.

Speak Your Mind