Friday, June 23, 2017

1920s Elsewhen Millinery Sybil hat take 2

Madame Mimi's amazing vintage 1920s tablecloth hat.

The first version of Sybil I made almost two years ago. I used yellow silk taffeta. So technically I have already reviewed this pattern. However I could not resist making this lovely again for an up coming 1920s-1930s picnic.

Hands down this is probably one of the most well drafted hat patterns I have ever worked with. All the pieces fit together without any finessing.
I have made quite a few hats and let me tell you some of the patterns out there are bad. Big 4, I'm looking at you. I have literally had a 1 inch difference between crown and brim to finesse. I don't like that. It makes me stabby.

Size and materials:
This pattern goes up to a size 25 head. Truly wonderful. I have a 23.25 inch head so most "one size" hats and patterns don't fit. Since this hat needs to sit all the way down on my head I use the size 24.

I found this old tablecloth at the thrift store about a year ago. Beautifully cross stitched, stained and faded in spots. I don't know why I bought it. It may have been the bright happy colors of the embroidery threads. Or that little voice in my head that says "you can use this for something".

Needless to say because of all the fading and stains I had to do some serious fussy cutting. My second  concern was there were 8 motifs on the tablecloth but they weren't all the same. With a 6 piece crown I knew 2 crown pieces wouldn't match. Oh well, my work is never about perfection. I gather up my creative inspiration and just go with it. I decided to match the 4 front and side pieces and put the non matching ones on the back. The brim also had to be cut with some of the cross stitch design on it. I fused a crisp woven interfacing to all the crown pieces and used a heavyweight home decor interfacing for one of the brim pieces.

RST=right sides together
WST=wrong sides together
The pattern maker gives you 2 options on finishing the wired brim. Method 1 is to sew the brim RST and insert the wire afterwards. Method 2 is to stitch the brim WST, attach the wire and use bias tape to finish off the brim. You will have to sew the bias on by hand. The first Sybil I made I did the insert the wire into brim method. It was not fun. You can't attach the brim until after you have wired it. That was a huge pain in the ass. I wound up hand stitching the brim on because it was super awkward to run through my machine. So this time I used the bias tape method. It was so much easier. You can attach the brim BEFORE you wire it. What a difference! Even though you need to stitch on the bias tape by hand, it was worth it. I also use petersham ribbon as my hat band instead of fabric. I just stitch it in by hand and when it gets soiled I can always change it out.

I really like my tablecloth hat. The shape of Sybil is very flattering and the brim gives some sun protection. There was no reason to add any additional decoration because of all the pretty handwork. I would like to think the person who made this tablecloth would be pleased with the repurposing of it. Or they are rolling in the grave cursing my name for abusing their tablecloth.

You can see the beginning of my non matching panels in the back. That little bit of not perfect makes me love my hat even more.

ElsewhenMillinery is on Etsy. They sell both hats and hat patterns. :-) 

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