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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Here's Your Hat.....

I am back to the dreaded room cleaning. I was looking for the straw braid to make hats. I am still looking for the straw braid to make hats. I will probably still be looking next month at this rate. It is nowhere to be found.

So.....I decided to quit looking and show you how to make a hat out of needlework fabric instead. This is what we are aiming for. It's a picture hat with either a rounded crown or a flat crown. They are fairly easy to make once you get the hang of it. I will show you how to make the basic hat today and tomorrow I will show you some trim tricks.

BTW, the hatstand is really easy to make. The one shown is made from a wheel bead, a fancy spindle and a 5/8" wooden bead from the craft store. It was assembled and then all of it was stained.
Now about the hats.

This gadget is the hat form. The round end is what they call a round knob or sometimes a doll's head at the craft stores. It is flat on one side and sometimes has a hole on the flat side. I simply glued that to a 5/8" diameter dowel. The round end is for the rounded crown and the flat end is for the flat crown. I am sure that you figured that out for yourself. At least I hope that you did....
You can work on two hats at once this way. The rubber band is to hold the fabric in place until it dries. This particular fabric is some #24 congress cloth. You don't need more than what you see in the photo to make a couple of hats. This can be painted after it is finished to make whatever color of hat you would like.

Here you can see that I have stretched squares of the fabric over the ends of the tool. I first sprayed the fabric with extra hold, scentless hairspray to make it damp and pliable. With this, it will dry nice and stiff. I smoothed out as many wrinkles as I could manage. After I put the rubber bands in place I worked even more of the wrinkles out of it. After it is in place, it must dry thoroughly. Walk away and go play with the cat, or knit, or take a walk. Just don't be anxious to play with it.

Actually, I use the time to cut out the brim. I cut one of card stock. Then I glue that to a piece of the fabric. I trim it close to the card stock. Then I turn it over and do the same thing to the other side. If your fabric is stiff enough, you can leave the card stock out. If it is really stiff you can use just one thickness of the fabric. It just depends on the fabric that you are using.

In the photo above, I used the card stock in all three. I wanted a heavy brim. If you are doing a summer hat I would suggest that you use a heavy fabric and spray it a lot.
After you get the brim covered with the fabric, put glue on the inside of the brim and along the back seam. Take the rubber band off of the crown but leave the crown on the form. Then overlap the back of the brim and place it over the crown. Pin in place and wait again......Go have lunch. Play Guitar Hero or Rock Band.

When it is dry take the hat off of the stand. Trim all of the ragged edges that are hanging down from the crown. Trim it right up to the inside edge of the brim. You now have a hat that is ready to trim.

You can either go for it and decorate it or you can come back tomorrow and I will show you how to do the bows and other stuff.
See you then.


MeezerMama said...

Love the tutorial! I plan to paint my brim fabric with Matte ModPodge, which will make it very stiff and will also prevent the edges from fraying.

Caseymini said...

Actually, the mod podge is not necessary. If you are using the fabric that I used, the hats are stiff with just the glue.