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Vintage Style In A Modern World

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Gail Carriger Suggests an Excellent Article & Podcast on Feathered Hats & MURDER


Hello fashionable readers, here's something fun for you!

Fun article:
Murderous Millinery: A brief look at the fashion for feathered hats in the early 20th century

Gail Carriger Suggests an Excellent Article & Podcast on Feathered Hats & MURDER

And a companion podcast on the subject:  Murderous Millinery

I do love hats, despite their murderous intentions.

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

You can shop my recommendations via the following lists:
Steampunk, Retro Jewelry, Makeup, Retro Clothes, Lifestyle


Product links on this blog are usually to Amazon using my associate code. At no additional cost to you this means I get a slight kick back if you make a purchase. Thank you! This allows me to continue to produce this blog without sponsors.

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

A while ago I did a post about making magnetic hat flowers, so I could have different flowers on my two cream hats depending on the dress.

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

A Reminder

  • The hats have heavy duty magnets under their bands.
  • For each fancy I used a hot glue gun to affix strong rare earth disc magnets (facing the correct direction for the hats!) to the backs.
  • I also glue a bit of ribbon over the magnet as otherwise the magnet is stronger than the glue and just comes off the fancy.
Some day someone smart will market magnet buttons so they can be sewn on . . .

Since the first session of fancy-making, I have been plotting to do this to a cream headband as well, but have been experiencing technical difficulties.

In the interim, I created more fancies!

New Fancies


DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger
Black grosgrain with teapot button decroation
DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger
Black on the hat!
For this one I adapted an old royal blue faire favor. Since I don't do faire anymore, it seemed like a good use for an old friend. Added a spray of feathers to the back with a glue gun, and gued down the magnet and covered with ribbon and wha la!

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger
Completed royal blue favor
Re-purposing a cheap headband from Ross.

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger
Before

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger
Added magnet

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger
On the hat
And lastly I did a cheeky red bow with a button.

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

The final collection:


DIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger

One of the best thing about these? They pack small!

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

So a while back I was rambling through Calistoga, as you do, and I found a vintage store, as I do all the time, and things being as they are, bought this hat for $15.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black
Burgundy 1940s labled Lancaster Wool

Searching the net, I found a few others of this shape.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black
Grey Tear Drop, One of 3 for $50, Doeskin Felt

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black
 Hat  early 1940s  The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

It's difficult to see, when it's not on the head but it's so cute! It's worn tilted to one side and down over the right eye and results in a very Noir look.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

I proudly brought mine home intending to clean and and fix (it had clearly once had a feather and such) only to find I have absolutely NOTHING to wear it with. With the exception of two steampunk dresses (already matched to steampunk hats) I actually own very little burgundy clothing. All my reds are true reds. Well, I didn't want to overhaul my wardrobe just for the one new accessory, so I decided I had better learn how to dye a hat!

DIY ~ Hat Dieing 


Internet informs me that one can use paints designed to absorb (for such things as hand-painting silk) that are heat activated. I opted for Jacquard Textile Colors. I also decided on black as I figured it would cover the best and go with the most outfits.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

Tools
  • Special Paint
  • Protective Clothing
  • Protective Surface
  • Paint Brush
  • Water
  • Blow Dryer
  • Lint brush
  • Small scissors
First, I cleaned the hat using the lint brush and clipped any stray threads. The paint seemed a little gloppy to me and it said on the bottle that it could be used for airbrushing thinned 20% with water. So I thinned it out by about that much.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

I did a test paint on the back and dried with hair dryer. It looked good and seemed to adhere well so I went to work painting starting with the bottom. I tried to rub the paint in with the brush, so it wouldn't clump or cause too much of a sheen. The paint absorbed and dried FAST.


In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

I dried the underside for a day in front of our big old room heater (the wall wart). Flipped it and then painted the crown and the brim.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

The I dried it again for several days, luckily it was cold out so we had the heater on a lot.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

During the interim, I bought better wider stiffer brush (just inexpensive ones from a craft store). Throughout the process I also kept having to thin the paint.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

Lastly, I did one final coat over the outside with the paint thinned to about 50/50.

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black

The felt became stiffer and less soft than the original hat, but the look is what I wanted. I added a few small feathers and a magnet to the inside of the feather holding tube so that I could put on a flower to match whatever dress I chose to wear it with. (If you want to know how I made those, here's the DIY.)

In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat Black
 Photo showing finished hat with a simple matched black bow magnet from the second round of hat fancies (post to come).

Conclusion:
It worked well enough, but the hat still has a slight reddish sheen in bright daylight. I didn't paint the interior of the crown, since that won't be visible and I wanted it to stay nice and soft, and not come off black on my hair!

* If I had it to do again? I'd thin the paint 50/50 from the get go and use the bigger stiffer brush. This would mean three thinner coats, but would be faster and worth the effort as I think it would keep the texture of the felt better.

Now I just need a reason to wear it.

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats

I haven't done a DIY post in a while, Fashionable Reader. Partly this is due to the fact that many of my projects got donated or put into storage when I moved (as did my dressmaker's dummy).

But I did go into a mending phase recently where I decided some of my vintage hats needed help and repairs, thought you might like to see what I did . . .

Cream hat, 1940s, beret style, felt, repaired & cleaned

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
Cream felt hat bought at Bon Marche Thrift Store in Sonoma for $15, original state.

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
Cleaned with lint brush, old netting removed.
Brim stuffed and reenforced with tissue and sew back together.

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
 All decoration removed.
DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
 Tried it with new netting, didn't like it.
DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
Finished product, added teapot pin.


Navy hat, 1940's beret style, velvet repaired & cleaned

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
Navy velvet hat bought at Bon Marche Thrift Store in Sonoma for $15, original state.

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
 Roset detail, cleaned, flattened and sewed down.

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
Interior stuffed and repaired.

DIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt Hats
Navy hat, final product. Haven't had a chance to wear it yet, I just don't wear a lot of navy. Soon, I hope.


I do have a blog planned at some point discussing felt hats in general, how to keep and maintain them. I do hope hats are something that interest you, fashionable readers. I certainly adore them. I wear them for most of my events and I wish I wore them more often. 

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit

I love millinery Fashionable Reader. No, really love.

There are few things in life that make me happier than hat decorating. Perhaps tea. Maybe the perfect macaroon. But I digress . . . hats!

I have a number of hats of the Victorian persuasion that I have attacked with a hot glue gun and way too many feathers and ribbons over the years. They survived my attacks and I wore them with a smile. Yes, I have a bit of the Ivy Hisselpenny in me. Well, maybe more than a bit. (Here's a blog on doing it steampunk style.)

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit

But what troubled me was ~ how to trim a neutral colored hat to match several different outfits? I wanted to be able to switch out the trim depending on the dress. Inspired by the magnetic badges at Literary Orange 2011, I sourced some strong rare-earth magnets and Got Creative.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any OutfitIn Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The magnet off of my Literary Orange badge. The metal going into place on a hat band.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any OutfitIn Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
My weapon of choice, the hot glue gun,. The metal in place on my wide straw hat.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The magnet in place on the straw topper. Make sure you "line up" your magnets positive to negative.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The hats and trim awaiting action.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any OutfitIn Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
Blue/green hat trim ~ used a strip of binding tape glued over the magnet. The blue flowers were sourced from a thrift store $0.50 and the metal flowers were off of an old pair of shoes.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any OutfitIn Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The trim on the two hats. Magnet to magnet seems to work better and be more secure than magnet to metal.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any OutfitIn Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The cream trim. Cannibalized an old decorated hair elastic (my hair is now too short).

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The double magnets made it stick out a bit so I added some extra flowers behind, adhered to the side of the magnet.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The final cream flower.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
Pink flower off of a hairband from Ross, $2.50. Has the advantage of being already curved.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any OutfitIn Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The finished pink in place.

In Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit
The finished product!

So excited. I now have plans to make more to go with other dresses. I'm a magnetic hat flower maniac! Be assured, Fashionable Reader, I will tell you all about it here.
Gail Carriger Suggests an Excellent Article & Podcast on Feathered Hats & MURDERDIY ~ More Hat Decorations with Gail Carriger In Which Gail Carriger Dies a Hat BlackDIY with Gail Carriger: Repairing Vintage Felt HatsIn Which Gail Carriger Get's Crafty, Using Magnets to Make Plain Hats Match Any Outfit

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