The Sewing:

So I finished my hat.

I actually remembered to take a few pictures! I started out making a mockup out of thin cardboard. I took the measurements from page XXX of Costume in Detail. I ended up with a mailbox-shaped bonnet. Not exactly flattering. Also I forgot to take a picture. Then I cut slits in the cardboard to flare it out a bit.

Once I had the shape I wanted I made a form. It’s made out of several layers of 2 and 3 inch ethafoam. This is the type of foam that I use at work to pad and support artifacts. While I was making to form I trued up the shape as well as rounded the edge of the crown. I really want to a nice curve to it and I’m pleased with how it turned out.

The next step was to drape a pattern on the brim section. I then pinned this pattern flat to my ironing board and used it as a guide to create the brim. I started on the outside worked my way around, layering each new pass of top of the one that came before until I filled it all in. I forgot to take pictures of this process but it was definitely quite time-consuming and required many pins! I sewed this section together using coats and clark thread and a small curved needle. I actually use a pair of pliers and curve my own needles these days. The curved needles available I find are much to large and heavy. 
Next I used the form I had created to form the crown. I pinned the brim to the form and began to pin the braiding overlapping the edge of the brim and working my way towards the back. Again I used up most of my pins for this. I used the curved needle and sewed it together on the form, attaching the crown to the brim as well. The final step was to run a continuous piece of braiding around the neck edge of the crown and the outer edge of the brim, tying it all together.



I added a simple bias-cut strip of a fairly smooth, cream silk dupioni and a bavolet of the same.

Things I’d Change:

-I don’t like the trim. I’m going to replace it with something better later… maybe pink silk?
-The brim is quite floppy and needs to be wired. This will also help it to maintain a nice curve
-I wore this bonnet at Fort Erie this past weekend and the brim could be a bit wider. I think I stretched the braiding as I pinned it to my ironing board and, once it was released, it probably shrank a bit.
– I wore this as a "camp follower" with my unit bit I find it a bit fussy for that role. I want to make another similar one in brown with cotton ties and trim.

The Sundry:

Big News: I’ve been accepted to the MPhil program in Textile Conservation at the University of Glasgow! I’ve actually been accepted for a few weeks but I only got my official acceptance email last friday. Unfortunately I’m currently trying to wrestle my CAS form out of the administration so that I can apply for my visa. Time is running out and I’d like to leave in a month but it all depends on getting that CAS and my visa…

I also went to my first reenactment at Fort Erie! I had a blast!!! It was so much fun. I wish I could do that every weekend. The group I went with is so awesome. Any event is really only as good as the people you play with and I went with the best! So if you’re reading this members of the 60th (*cough* Connie *cough*) thanks for making my first event an amazing one!

P.S. I’ll be posting about what I wore at some point…


One thought on “Hat!

  1. Aw, shucks, thanks! I’m so glad you had a blast worthy of three exclamation marks! It was great havin’ ya and you sure as heck raised the bar for female reenactors everywhere.

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