Monday, April 23, 2012

The hat of pain and pattern of many pieces

In my last post, I wrote about purchasing this hat pattern from Truly Victorian and some millinery supplies. Well, the pattern came on Saturday and the supplies a day before, so I got to work on my hat all day Saturday. I probably could have finished it in a day, but got stuck because I don't have enough trim for the edge of the brim. (Why do I never have trim?)

The pattern is great though (it's not the pattern of many pieces, that one will be discussed later). I've been doing it a little differently than instructed, mostly because of the qualities of my fabric - not because I can't understand the instructions or think they make things more difficult than necessary, which can happen with commercial patterns. This fabric is not the easiest to work with, don't let its simple black appearance fool you. It's pretty drapey, so the edges of the frame were very obvious when I tried covering it. To remedy this, I added a layer of fleece over the buckram frame.

"So," you may be wondering, "how is this the hat of pain?"
While placing the vertical wires in the band portion, I manage to stab one under my left-hand thumb nail. Augh. I'm left-handed so this was a pretty bad place to injure... I wrap my thumb in a tissue and some tape, then continue on. A while later I'm stepping out of the room and feel something wet on my foot. "What could I have spilled??" Nothing. I spilled nothing. I somehow cut my toe.
Continuing along after checking the carpet for blood, I make it to the part where I need to press the fabric band. Can you see where this is going? I burn the same thumb with steam from my iron. Maybe I shouldn't have taken the tissue off once it stopped bleeding - I could have had some protection from the steam. I'm not even counting the numerous needle and pin pricks gathered along the way (what seamstress does? they happen too often).
The final injury was to the hat itself. After I covered the brim with fabric, it was bubbling so I wanted to press it with some steam in the hope that it would lay better. Nope. The fabric melted. I literally ripped it off in anger and had to start over on covering the brim.
All these injuries aren't particularly terrible, my thumb hurt pretty badly Saturday night and Sunday, which kept me from being able to do some things (like opening Tupperware containers), but it's better now. I've just been surprised by the amount of injuries I managed to acquire in a couple hours on a seemingly easy project - millinery might not be my strong suit.

Now that that rant's done, moving on to "the pattern of many pieces." I am referring to the Galliano Pirate Jacket, available here. One of the wonderful people on Craftster had mailed me a printed copy of the pattern years ago, but it's been sitting around since then. Today, I cut out 42 of the pieces. There's a couple left, but some of those are doubles and some are rectangles I will just measure onto the fabric. Speaking of fabric, I had some picked out for it but I might try to find something different when I go shopping for Victorian costume supplies later this week. I don't know when I'll actually make this jacket, but at least the pattern is ready.

leftover paper on the left, 42 + pattern pieces on the right

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