June 24, 2011

Going to the final of the Hat Designer of the Year 2011: Day and night hat

This is my multipurpose design, the Giorno/Sera (Day/Night) hat. It’s a hat that works as a sun hat with a wide brim, but which can be used as an evening hat by removing the brim and attaching a veil.

Here is the sketch of the hat (and yes, I sketched that not having a clue how I was going to solve the issue of the removable brim and veil!!):


Two of my projects for the competition were made with sewn straw braid. The reason is that I love the possibilities of sewing “straw” braid by machine and the wonderful final look. It helps too that I recently took at course at the Hat Museum/Atelier of Chazelles-sur-Lyon that was a real eye opener in what concerns the use of a hat braid sewing machine, with top notch teacher and wonderful person Jean-Pierre Tritz. Here is a picture of us students with the much admired Jean-Pierre Tritz (he’s 4th from the left, I’m 2nd from the left). I cannot recommend highly enough this course and this teacher: he is THE MAN.


Here is the picture of the finished hat assembled as EVENING hat (the straw used is Starbright):


The front angle on the hat was made by sewing the braid closer together on that side. Little by little the right angle is achieved.

[Lots more pictures follow, just click on the “more” button on the left!]


June 23, 2011

Going to the final of the Hat Designer of the Year 2011 competition: sketches

My friend Montez (Susan Murphy) who writes the wonderful blog Chapeau du Jour sent me an email on March 12 telling me about the Hat Magazine competition themed “La Dolce Vita” to be judged by milliner Elvis Pompilio and encouraging me to participate (I have every issue of the Hat Magazine, but I had completely missed the article about the competition!).

In order to participate on the competition I had to draw 6 designs of hats and send them off to the Hat Magazine by the end of March, so I only had two weeks to work on them, but I embraced the project and managed to finish them in time.

My life would have been much easier if I had first made the hats and then sketched them, but there was no time so I draw the hats out of my imagination (which proved to be quite a challenge later on).

Here is the announcement at The Hat Magazine of the 12 milliners who moved on to Round 2:HatDesignerCompetitionAnouncement

I was lucky to be one of the 12 milliners that made it to the Round 2, and I was instructed to make 3 specific hats out of the 6 sketches. Everything moved really fast after that because of the many things going on in my life at that time (co-organizing Barcelona’s Hat Parade -Passejada amb Barret-, giving hat making lessons, a trip abroad) and I had to work really hard again to meet the deadline for the finished hats, but it sure was fun!

The second round was judged this past June 21st by Elvis Pompilio and Sylvie Pourrat and her team (from Premiere Classe). They selected 9 milliners who will be showing hats for the final judging on September 4 (one of my hats will be there!).

These are two of the the three sketches that were selected for me to turn into actual hats (the hat that will be exhibited in Paris will remain a secret for now!!):


These are the other three sketches (I am better at making hats than at sketches, I promise you).


This is all for now. Pictures and insight into the making of two of the hats soon!!

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