Hat Collection: Make Do and Mend

MakeDoMendIt’s so weird to think that, in less than two months’ time, I’ll graduate as a milliner… In order to do so, each student has to present a small collection of hats around a theme. I hesitated between a few themes for some time, but none of them really convinced me. Then I thought about the theme I would finally choose, which is, as you might have guessed from the title of this article, Make Do and Mend, and it was kind of an epiphany since it combined two of my main obsess… I mean, interests, vintage fashion and upcycling.

So the plan is to make some 1940s inspired hats only using second-hand materials, with a few exceptions such as thread and other notions that would be too difficult, if not impossible, to source in the second hand market.

The assignment is to make five hats: a winter hat, a summer hat, a hat on a buckram base (the buckram is one of the things I’ll have to buy new) and two hats made with free to choose techniques. I was thinking about knitting for one of those last two (I think I could find a sweater whose yarn I might be able to repurpose), but nothing’s set in stone yet!

For the time being I only have started on the first two hats (the winter and summer ones), but I wanted to share the process with you before the end for once. So here are the first two pages of my inspiration notebook: the one you see above is simply the front page, where I sketched without thinking too much some hat shapes that evoked the forties to me. And the one below is the inspiration page for the first hat: some pictures of the hat I would transform and some drawings I made to decide what the final hat would look like. As for the summer hat I started, I haven’t finalised the inspiration page yet, but I’ll share it with you as soon as I do.

MakeDoMendWinterThe winter hat will almost certainly look like the simplest of the drawings, the one that’s on the head. I tried various ribbon combinations but I quickly realised I prefer to let the felt flowers be the focus. And I’m pretty chuffed that I’ll probably even be able to reuse the petersham ribbon from the original beret inside the new hat! I just need to wash it I think, and it’ll be good to go!

I’ll keep you posted on my progress!

21 thoughts on “Hat Collection: Make Do and Mend

  1. This is so interesting! I was absolutely fascinated by the make do mend link you put up there. I’d love to get my hand on these brochures and I just can’t wait to see what you’ll make here. For me hat making is related to sorcery. It’s just plain magical. See ya!

  2. Wouah, très impressionant! Est-ce que tu portes les chapeaux que tu conçois? La touche années 40 ultime, j’adore! Je me demande comment tu fais pour combiner le boulot, la couture, la confection de chapeaux et chaussures… Bien joué!

    • Pour le moment je ne porte malheureusement pas tous les chapeaux que je conçois: certains ont été faits comme exercices, donc sont dans des genres/matières qui, même si je les aime bien en soi, ne me conviennent pas pour être portés. Pour le moment je porte plus ceux d’hiver, en feutre, que ceux d’été, en paille et autres, mais j’ai quelques idées de chapeaux de paille plus portables au quotidien, y a plus qu’à…
      Pour ce qui est de tout combiner: je travaille à temps partiel (4/5e), et en tant qu’enseignante je profite bien des vacances scolaires! Et puis je n’ai pas d’enfants et un chéri pas trop collant! 😉 Et bon, je n’ai pas une productivité de malade non plus hein!

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