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How to Make a Simple Beret

By Ann | 14 Oct 2018 14:00:00 | Full article...


  The humble beret has been around for centuries. Originally constructed out of wool felt and designed to keep the head warm and dry, this peasant hat has evolved to mean many things to many people. These simple hats were enlarged in 1900’s to become voluminous velvet Tam O Shanters and worn with ostrich feathers Scaled back down, they were the hat to wear in the 1920’s 30’s and 40’s. Chic and warm. In the 1950’s the beret was adopted by the

How to Wire and Finish a Brimless Hat

By Ann | 7 Oct 2018 11:00:00 | Full article...


Wiring and Finishing A Brimless Hat 1. Cut a piece of wire to match the circumference of the inside edge of your hat + 3 inches. Overlap the ends by 3 inches and hold in place with a piece of sellotape or by wrapping with thread 2. Starting with double stitch or a french knot, blanket stitch the wire on to the edge of the hat. Allow space between stitches. It should only take a couple of minutes. 3.Take a piece of milliner's pertersham long enough to go around the inside of

How to Make Quick and Easy Hat Stands- Part 2

By Ann | 2 Oct 2018 21:00:00 | Full article...


  Well now that you've seen how easy small hat stands are to make, why not go for some larger stands that can be taken apart for transportation? These hat stands are fantastic for narrow a small spaces and can be easily adjusted to different heights These are not as instant, but are extremely easy to make and very robust. They are also great fun and can keep the children very busy....   You will need: broom sticks and longer rake handles Some thick timber and

How to Make Quick and Easy Hat Stands- Part 1

By Ann | 2 Oct 2018 13:00:00 | Full article...


Hat stands can be very expensive and they can also be fragile and easily damaged particularly if you are taking them to shows and exhibitions. Here are some really easy hat stands that are virtually bomb proof and are very easy on the pocket. With some very simple woodworking skills you will have them made in next to no time. Take a few broomsticks and cut them into varying lengths      2. Take some thick wooden planks or 2x 3 timber planed all round 

Sinamay- A Quick and Easy Blocking Technique

By Ann | 27 Mar 2018 21:00:00 | Full article...


Blocking Sinamay - Easy and Quick We hear about lots of ways in which people block sinamay. There is no 'correct' way to do it. The most important thing is that the results are beautiful and that this is acheived as simply as possible with as little handling as possible. This is how we do it. It's easy and quick and does not involve vats of water and long drying times. Perfect for those last minute hats. Firstly, there are two types of sinamay: 1. Mildly Stiffened This

How to Dye a Wool Hood

By Ann | 23 Mar 2018 11:00:00 | Full article...


Dyeing a Wool Hood Sometimes we need a deeper red or, say, a bright yellow in a wool hood. With a little care dyeing an ivory hood yellow, or overdyeing a red to a deeper shade can be easily achieved. Follow these simple guide lines. Find a suacepan with plenty of space to move a wool hood around in. Add hot water and add some All in 1 Dye, making sure it's dissolved fully. Don't add too much dye, you can always add more before you start dyeing. Think of the dye as a

Happy St Clement’s & Saint Catherine’s Days (23rd November & 25th November)

By Ann | 22 Nov 2017 16:00:00 | Full article...


Doubly Blessed be the Hat Makers! St. Clement, who is commemorated on November 23rd. He was probably the third Bishop of Rome (AD91). He is the patron saint of felt makers and hatters. Tradition says, St. Clement, forced to flee from his native city, was worn out by constant tramping. His feet were badly cut and blistered and he sought a remedy by collecting bits of wool clinging to the bushes, and placing them in his sandals. After a day's journey he found that pressure and warmth had

Winning Ways with Abaca Silk- Much Easier Than You Think!

By Ann | 30 Jul 2017 16:00:00 | Full article...


Abaca Silk Abaca Silk or Silk Abaca as it is also known, is a fine hand woven cloth of silk and abaca straw. The warp thread is silk whilst the cross threads are fine grade abaca fibres. This results in a soft translucent material that can be blocked, draped and free formed into amazing headwear. It really is so versatile. Silk Abaca has hardly any fray and adds elegance when used as a trim on sinamay and felt hats. It also behaves like Jinsin when ‘fanned’ out but is much

How to Curl and Shape Quill Feathers

By Ann | 13 Jun 2017 16:00:00 | Full article...


  This is the easiest way that you will ever try for effective split free shaping of ostrich quills This will make your hat trimming a much easier millinery affair. You will need a quill feather, a sink and an electric curling tongs.   1. Fill a sink with hot water and soak your quill feather for 10-15mins. DO NOT mix colours as your quill feathers may lose some extraneous dye. Plug in your curling tongs a set to med-high heat.   2. Remove your quill

Creating Hackle Hat Trims- Part 1

By Ann | 5 Jun 2017 15:00:00 | Full article...


Trimming with Hackle Feathers – Part 1 Hackles feathers come very densely packed onto a fringe. On 10cm of fringe there’s about 100 feathers. They range between 3” and 5” in length. They come in a great range of colours and are very inexpensive. Stylised Feather Flowers Simply form a small section of fringe into a circle. Secure with a couple of stitches.   Embellish the centre with pearls or crystals, or more single hackle

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