Its a hot and sweaty here in London for most people that would be an opportunity to sit outside. For me it sounded like a perfect day for making fascinators.
It is currently drying in my studio so I thought I would share with you the first part of the process.
This is the getting mucky bit!
So a while back I bought a set of hat blocks form eBay. They were a very basic set to start with because i was not sure if i would be any good. They were still a pretty hefty price (£110 if i remember rightly) so I persevered. When I got the hang of it i found some beautiful vintage half head facinatiors on eBay. I loved them but they were way out of my price range so I commissioned a guy form the original hat making company to make one for me and he did.
Its the beauty you can see above is a big one it takes up about a third of your head.
So when I choosing my felt I thought a better go with the black so its a little less in your face than my usual hats.
SO first you put your felt onto the wooden hat block, making sure you have an extra inch or so to turn underneath the block.
Gather your essentials scissors, iron, kettle, washing up liquid and starch spray.
Put your kettle on heat up the water you want the water to be nearly boiling. Put washing up liquid all over your felt in a spiral. Then cover it until damp with hot water. DO NOT TOUCH the hot felt until it is comfortable to touch otherwise it will really really hurt!Rub the soap into the whole of the felt until you can see bubbles all over it like a light foam. Get it into all of the creases of your block making sure there are no wrinkles. If you do get wrinkles try to work them out from the top of your block to the bottom. As you do this the felt may start to dry don't be afraid to add more water!
Your hat should start to look like this. Put a piece of cloth over it to protect the felt and start to run your iron over the block. This will pull out the soap and excess water and start to form the shape in its dry form. Make sure you take the cloth off and look at your hat as it will occasionally slip and need to be adjusted.
Then spray the starch all over the felt this will wet it again. Let it soak in a little then repeat the step above covering the felt with a cloth and ironing.
Turn under the felt and iron it cut the excess leaving a centimeter. Then leave it to dry naturally this will ensure it it bone dry and stiff.
Well that's it for now Allot I know but i will follow this up later in the week how to finish it.