‘Black Friday’ hat

I had some free work time to use and so I spent the day at Catherine’s studio to set up my new urban hat.

The day was blisteringly hot. 40C and humid. Singapore weather. Catherine’s studio had a fan and I needed to steam my hat into shape. 

Once everyone returns to work later this month, I won’t be able to choose my days off so this was my best opportunity to get my urban hat prepared.

The crown gets wrapped in plastic before you shape the felt base onto the crown shape.

What you see here is the steamed crown into its shape. The green pins at the base of the crown indicate the depth of the hat and includes seam allowance.

We did a second check of how deep the hat should be and then I very, very carefully cut the brim off.

The steamer Catherine uses is designed specifically for this process. She’s a professional and now that I’ve been to her workshop she’s happy to enable my hat adventures using her equipment.

See the puckering and gathers around the crown, 

We did another check and realised I was using a 22″ brim base. My noggin is 24″. I quickly found the 24″ brim base and I was able to make the brim fit!

With the 24″ brim base, the puckers disappeared (head slap moment over) and I was then able to create a wider and even brim base.

Here’s a look at the tiny hand operated sewing machine Catherine has in her collection. I think it’s a buttonholer.

The crown and brim have now been set and are drying as we speak.

In the time I had left, I cut out some flowers and used the burner and flower tools to create future flowers.

Here’s Catherine demonstrating the flower making process from last month’s workshop.

My ‘Black Friday’ hat will be finished but I need another full day for all the hand stitching.

Summer is still fierce so before I left Catherine’ studio I bought a straw hat base that fit me so I’ll show you how this new Summer hat comes together. That’s another 4 hours of hand stitching. Hopefully when I pick up my Black Friday hat, I’ll set the crown into an angular style.

All the sewing techniques make hat making achievable and I’ll show you the tools I’ve recently been using so you can see how sewing skills can be used in other craft areas.

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