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1787 Tall Crown Hat

1780s stays, 1787 Tall Crown Hat, 18th century, events, GBACG, Lumieres, projects

There’s Been Lots of Sewing

But not a lot of posting!  Mostly it’s because I have been slowly slowly working on binding my 1780s stays, but also because I’ve been working on Michael’s 16th century trunkhose (but they keep seeming to stay in a not-excitingly-photographed condition – update soon!).

I think red is my color of the moment, because that’s the theme here…

First, I made the Costume Close-Up cloak for the Lumieres seaside stroll.  I was worried about freezing to death, so I took some lightweight red wool, fulled it, and made up the cloak — which I have to report is SUPER easy, because of the fulling… you don’t have to finish any of the edges!  I debated and debated what to line the hood with — I wanted to do something solid so it would work for any era (because how often do I make cloaks?), but the only thing in the stash that worked was a green & red 18th c.-style indienne print.  Oops!  Guess it’s not going to work for 16th century!  Also, a report — according to the book, the hood is cut large to accomodate the big hairstyles of the period.  Well, obviously they don’t define “big” the same way I do — there is no WAY that hood was going to fit over my hair!  So I’ll have to make another version at some point with a bigger hood, and this time of some heavier wool so it will work for REALLY cold events.  Luckily, although we expected rain, we had a beautiful day, so it worked out just fine.

Next, I went to the GBACG Duchess of Devonshire tea, which Cynthia and I organized.  We had planned one tea (obviously), but it sold out so quickly we added a second date the following weekend!  I didn’t want to stress myself out by trimming my hat at the last second, so planned to wear something else… but then got the wild hair the night before to wear the hat.  Silly costumer!  So I put some burgundy ribbon and a burgundy feather on it, all with straight pins, and called it good.  I had experimented with using green ribbon, as in the original fashion plate, but it just looked like a Christmas hat.

I finished binding my 1780s stays in time to wear to tea #2 (ie late the night before).  I really wanted to wear them because — hey, they’re new!  Plus I wanted to find out how comfortable they’d be.  I handsewed ALL of the binding, top and bottom, both sides, because I really wanted it to look good.  And while I’m not 100% happy with it, I think it’s my best binding job so far.  The petersham worked well and I think it looks good — I was worried it would scream “petersham!” but I think it just looks like a ribbed ribbon.  I did discover some cosmetic changes I want to make when I do version #2, mostly that the side tabs are shorter than the back tabs, and I’d like to even that all out.  Also, I don’t have a back picture, but I want to make the line of the straps at the top back of the corset merge more.  I’ll post really REALLY final photos once I have the right color ribbon on hand to lace them with — I had to just use what I had on hand, which meant the straps are tied on with black, and the back got laced 1/2 with burgundy and 1/2 with green!  I wore it under my chemise dress, which is the only dress I had that (because it’s gathered) fit — all the rest of my dresses are too small in the bust and too big in the waist to fit!

I haven’t yet posted my photos from the first tea, but I’ll do so very soon!  I do have photos from the Devonshire tea #2 up.  Both teas were lots of fun — yummy food, good conversation, and we had lots of fun playing forfeits!

1787 Tall Crown Hat, 18th century, projects

The Basic Hat Is Done!

I did realize that I forgot to glue crin tape on the edges, over the millinery wire.  oops!  I realized this after I’d mulled and put on the fabric cover, so no going back now!  Luckily I can’t see any rough edges, so I’m hoping it won’t matter.

Now I’ve got to decide on trim — it looks like a lot of these stripey huge hats only have a bit of flowers on them (makes sense, as visually it’s very loud).  But I do still like the contrast with the green ribbon on the red & white stripey hat fashion plate, so I’m going to poke around and see if I can find something that will work.  Solid, definitely, as this is already pretty over the top!

Also, I love millinery!  This is making me want to get back onto my Edwardian suit, just so I can make the hat…

1787 Tall Crown Hat, projects

Further Mulling

(no millinery-related puns intended)

So nothing further was accomplished on this today due to 5 million other things to do, other than getting some Heat N Bond tso that I can double my buckram (can I just say formally that I hate any thing with “n” in the name instead of “and”?  Come on people, use an “&” if you’re feeling the need to be snappy).

But I have spent the day worrying about something, and that is how this sucker will stay on my head.  I was trying to keep the proportions/shape of the hat to purple/black striped fashion plate, which I think I’ve done successfully.  But I’m never quite sure how to attach hats to a hedgehog wig, given that most of the hedgehog comes from ratting.  My capote sits far down around my forehead, so that’s not a problem to keep on.  But it looks like in this and other fashion plates, it’s not really sitting down low around the forehead so much as perching on top.  I do wear a wig for hedgehog, so I could do a bun on top of my head that sits under the wig, which gets a hatpin through it… but I don’t want to spend the time to make a hat, only to have it flop around unsuccessfully!

So then I was thinking maybe I need to widen the crown and wear it lower, like the Vigee Le Brun painting (a look I don’t like as much, but which could be more practical).

There’s no great front shots of the hat from The Duchess, but the few there are again look perch-y, not low-on-the-forehead-y.  Update: I found another hat worn in The Duchess that’s a similar style, and it’s definitely a percher.  So I guess bun & hatpin is the way to go?

What do you think?

1787 Tall Crown Hat, projects

It’s Been a CADDy Weekend

And it’s only going to get worse!  Here’s one of only two not-on-my-must-accomplish list (bad Kendra!  Should work on “must do’s” before “like to do’s”!) I’ve been noodling on this weekend:

There are a couple of 18th century events coming up:  GBACG’s Duchess of Devonshire tea which I am co-organizing (popular enough that it looks like we’re going to do a second event the following weekend!), plus a Lumieres event.  I’ve been wanting a 1780s tall crown hat for a while, and in order to resist the urge to make a new dress or jacket (which is a LOT of work), I’ve been channeling my energy into accessories.  Which is really a good thing, because I have TONS of plans to make accessories and I never get around to it because I get stuck in the mad rush of “MUST HAVE SOMETHING NEW” (which invariably takes waaaay  more time than making accessories, and means I never get around to said accessories!).

1787_maciet7I’ve been wanting a 1780s tall crown hat for a while now — really, since I saw this 1787 stunner about a year ago.  I’ll periodically trawl through my image morgue and every time I go by this it jumps up and hits me a couple of times and says, “RIDICULOUS STRIPES!  YOU MUST HAVE THEM!”

Today I randomly got a hair to finally make one.  I looked for more examples, so that I could see the various options.  Most of the images I have of this style, which seems to be definitely a late 1780s one, are from fashion plates — I know I’ve seen some paintings with this hat, but I can’t seem to find them on my computer!  I wanted to double check the proportions, as I started by using the ones in the fashion plate, and WHOA did it look ridiculous!  I remembered that there’s a similar hat in The Duchess, so that was helpful, and then I found this Vigee LeBrun painting which gave me a clearer idea.

Here’s the various inspirations, along with the pattern I came up with:

I messed around with some construction paper to make a pattern, basing the brim off of an Edwardian hat pattern that my fabulous milliner friend Lynne Taylor made for me (which one of these days I need to make!) — I made the brim slightly smaller.

I’m going to cover and trim it like the red & white striped hat in the inspiration gallery above, because I have some narrow red & white silk in my stash (left over from my stripey bustle dress) and my current theme is to Use The Stash!  I’ve got the covering fabric and flannel for mulling cut out, but I can’t get to the buckram until tomorrow as I need to pick up some supplies so I can double it.

Yay for stuff on my head!