Thought for a lifetime

Einstein made the very important observation that " Imagination is more important than knowledge ".

Friday, January 31, 2014

Three Days in Hat Heaven

" A great hat speaks for itself " 
( author unknown )

Created in Wayne Wichern's Hat Workshop

At the end of three days and 21 hours of dedicated hat making
 I completed four original hats.

Step 1 was the very difficult selection of what color wool felt hood ( hat blank ) 
AND what wooden block from the 100+ blocks…

Step 2 was even more difficult to actually stretch the hood snugly over the block 
when you are a weakling like me !

Steam the heck out of it…

Pull, tug, stretch, steam, tie off the crown with string, 
pull, tug, stretch, steam, tie a string below the brim to hold the shape.

Then let the steamed, stretched, strung up felt dry.

Repeat with a new hood and block...

 and one more time with a beautiful fur velvet.

I also blocked a straw and getting the top flat was beyond a challenge.

Once the hats were dry they were oh so gingerly removed from the blocks. 
Some of the blocks are 'puzzle' blocks that come apart so removal is easier.

After cutting away the excess material the edge of the brims were finished by machine sewing.

This hat has a very challenging interior pleat that must be sewn without wrecking the shape.

Next sewing challenge; putting in the headband to reinforce the shape 
and help prevent distortion during the lifetime of the hat.

Finally the last step of trimming the hat.
A simple task compared to creating the hat but, almost more important!

This hat was named the Rally hat by my fellow students because
 my ribbon trim resembled a road and I said I wanted to glue on a little car :)

Wayne is a master at creating these maple leaves from the cut off excess felt of the hat.
Simple and elegant.

The asymmetrical brim on my straw hat really needed something big but, 
this trim is just tacked on so I can continue figuring it out 

The biggest test of my hats was if my girlies liked them or laughed…
Success! They loved them and even asked if they could have one.

However I am still in the honeymoon stage with my newest chapeaus 
and immensely enjoying wearing them out and about
so I am keeping every one.

I love any reason to go to San Francisco,
but, my three days in hat heaven ranks as one of my best trips EVER!

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