Polo captain Nic Roldan’s favourite hatmaker

The polo champion chooses the bohemian cool of LA designer Nick Fouquet’s hats to suit his laidback style

Nic Roldan (seated) with hat designer Nick Fouquet at his eponymous Californian shop
Nic Roldan (seated) with hat designer Nick Fouquet at his eponymous Californian shop | Image: Graham Walzer

“As a polo player, all the teams I play for have matching hats and jackets, so I’m constantly wearing hats – but they’re either sports hats or baseball caps. Aside from those, I haven’t always been a hat wearer, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve become more interested in them.

I grew up with Nick [Fouquet] in Palm Beach, Florida. I can’t remember how we met, but it was when I was 12 or 13, so we’ve been friends for quite a while. I lived in Wellington, which is the equestrian capital of the United States; Nick was living on the island, so he didn’t have anything to do with polo. I became professional when I was 14, so I made the decision about what I was going to do with my life quite early; I don’t think Nick knew he was going to get into hats, but he always had a very cool bohemian style and an artistic side. Back then, he was a surfer, so he wasn’t wearing the style of hats he makes today, but you could tell he was going places.  


As soon as Nick started designing his amazing hats, I started wearing them. He was always a trendsetter and the idea of making these sorts of statement fedoras was so original – a lot of people weren’t ready for them in the beginning, but now everyone I know loves his hats. He has some great designs, an amazing eye for detail and is leading the charge in the industry. I’m a big fan and think what he’s doing is super-creative. I like the more basic ones in colours like beige, camel, grey and black; I don’t go too crazy with them because my style is simple – I like to wear them with jeans, sneakers and a white T-shirt. But you could dress them up with a good jean jacket or shirt.

Nick is in the process of trying to design a special hat that is both inspired by me and will inspire me. He wants me to get a lot of wear out of it and not just keep it for occasional use – he’s thinking of using a moss green because I’m outside a lot, but he also wants it to look good when I’m in the barn. Knowing that I spend part of the year in Argentina, he likes the idea of designing it as a gaucho hat. He’s been talking about a flat brim, teardrop crown and leather band. He also wants to add a stampede strap so I can wear it while riding without it flying off. The straps usually have a sort of bolo adjuster in silver and turquoise, which Nick works with a jeweller to create, but he doesn’t think turquoise would suit me, so he suggested coral – though I think plain silver might be best. The strap itself will be made out of leather or even plaited horsehair, which sounds cool and, given my profession, entirely appropriate.”


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