Wednesday, February 25, 2009

They Came, and didn't eat the candy: Vogue 8175*

Second time around, I had four students vs. the 9 who crowded into the Vogue Fabrics Classroom on Sunday, Feb. 15. For what lacked in human mass, we made up for in sheer number of hats, Alice, sister of Laura Proudfoot, bought a whole hatbox full of vintage chapeaux. She pulled out so many hats, I thought for sure she was a magician. How many could she possibly fit into this round cardboard the size of a floor cushion? At least five, include the saucy straw number above with its bright chartreuse vine leaves. This particular picture hat, which looks like it's from the 1940s, would be most suitable for Easter, I think. Alice also had some hats from the 1950s, and another one she made using Vogue 7476, view C, which she says, was reaaaally hard to make with lots of hand-stitching. I have a picture wearing it, but it's not very good so I skipped uploading it. Most of her finds were for a few bucks at garage sales. She'd pick up and hear, "You like that? I got more at home. They were my aunt's." Now, how often does that happen? I am not going to the right garage sales clearly.

Jenny L. Gerst had a straw hat from the 1960s or 70s (we're not sure which). She had all these ace millinery supplies, the likes of which we've never seen at Vogue Fabrics. To wit: this supremely thick millinery wire that would easily survive a gust of Chicago wind. They shoudld build locally-made umbrellas with this stuff. Plush 100 percent wool felt not seen in these parts of Illinois. Other doo-dads I know nothing about, most of which she's purchased at Judith M Millinery, a two-hour drive from the Windy City. (Incidentally, Judith M bought out Manny's Millinery after it closed.) Turns out, Jenny and I know lots of fellow milliners. Eia. Laura Hubka. Laura Whitlock.

While Jenny and Alice worked on Vogue 8175, Laura and Barbara labored over the Flirty Fedora. This was an interesting project, since the pattern was drafted for fabric with a grain. Felt doesn't have a grain which makes it so great for a beginner. Plop down. Cut. No worries about the felt going that way when it needs to go this way. Also, felt doesn't need to be lined, so Barbara and Laura skipped that part of the instructions. Laura finished her hat by the end of class. She only needs to insert her petersham ribbon inside the hat, right at the part where head meets the rought texture of the hat.

This is the last of the hat classes for Vogue 8175. But don't cry into your Pale Ale or Guinness. I'm going to teach another hat class using Vogue 8405 in March. I figure results from this workshop can either become Easter bonnets, summer hats or just something to wear during these amusing times to Costco...I hope my students eventually email pictures of themselves wearing their work. Either that I'll come after them with my terrible digital camera. That should scare them in snapping something far more flattering than my uploaded pixels. Sometimes, you just need to instill the fear of God (or my photography) to get humans to do things your way.

1 comment:

Melissa Fehr Trade said...

Looks like fun! I'd be a kid in a candy store with that many hats to try on. In fact, I'm thinking of going to this new hats exhibit at the V&A that just started, but you should have a look at this video where you get to see a professional milliner make a top hat. I found it fascinating!