One of my recent projects lined up with an HSF challenge! I’m excited! My new hat qualifies for the HSF #15: The Great Outdoors. I enjoy making hats, partially because it is always nice to keep my hat making skills in use so I don’t forget them and also because I like putting those skills I’m practicing and remembering to use. The more you do things, the better you do them and the easier it is to remember how to do them!
The crown of this hat was pulled over a wooden form and then liberally brushed with sizing multiple times before being removed. The brim is a circle, wired on the outside edge, covers with French elastic to keep the poky edge bits from being poky and then bound in bias cut sinamay. The brim is also well sized. There is an inner millinery grosgrain hat band which covers the join between the crown and brim. The exterior hat band is made from bias cut cotton scraps from my stash. The flowers are some of those I purchased awhile ago for super cheap.
Fabric: ½ yd or so of sinamay* yardage.
Year: c. 1920.
Notions: Millinery wire, French elastic (½” wide bias cut tricot), millinery grosgrain, cotton scraps, faux flowers, and thread.
How historically accurate?: Let’s go with 90%. Sinamay has been produced for hundreds of years and was certainly known and used in America by the early 20th century. I don’t know for certain that it was used for hats at that point, but I have encountered images and extant examples of hats which certainly look like they could have been made from sinamay or some other similar looking material. The style of the brim and trimmings are consistent with the variety I’ve found in 1920s hats.
Hours to complete: 5ish, spread over about 3 months.
First worn: To the Crane Estate Lawn Party in Ipswich, MA at the beginning of August.
Total cost: Entirely a stash project, which makes it free! I probably paid about $5 for the amount of sinamay I used about six years ago when I bought it, but I used such small bits of all of the other materials that it is pretty hard to estimate how much they cost.
* Sinamay is a natural fiber woven from the processed stalks of the abaca tree, a banana palm native to the Philippines. It is woven in a variety of weights which produce a variety of qualities from rough to very fine, but regardless of the weight and quality it is always very strong. Historically, it was used to make twine, rope, and cordage because of its strength and resistance to salt water. More recently, it has been used for specialty items such as the production of tea bags, floor mats, and furniture, as well as for clothing, and hats!
You can see some inspiration here, in this post about making my long handled parasol. And here are some more examples: c. 1920, c. 1925, and 1927. I’ve got more pictures of my whole ensemble, including my new long handled parasol, which will be coming soon!