Just look what artist Molly Hill dreams up for hats! Aren't they amazing??? Oh to have a 'Rooster Hat' early in the morning, or a 'Parachute Hat' when the wind is blowing... And haven't you always wondered what the tooth fairy wears on her/his head? I have, and I am so glad that Molly shows us all this and much more! She makes me want to sculpt dolls again - not to mention raiding the refrigerator for hat supplies!!!!
I will totally admit to being completely smitten by the "Millinery bug"! I dreamed about Hats last night, and this morning I found myself stacking cereal bowls, tupperware and tea cups, visualizing the next 'great' look... So don't be surprised that you will be seeing more 'Hat' links here for a while! First off, take a look at these glorious pieces by Ana Voog known as "mad things, connected by hooks"!
(Check out her Blog too, filled with great information and links.)
Although I do not knit or crochet, I adore her shapes, and sense of extreme whimsy! Here is a woman who is not afraid of being seen!!! I am visualizing a new use for all those 'single socks' laying around the house... Or those old sweaters sitting in the back of the closet...
I very rarely take classes myself, being too busy with my own schedule of working and teaching, and also of the philosophy that 'if I can teach myself I learn more in the long run'. Well today was an exception. I have wanted to take a hat making class for ages! In January I found a straw hat class taught by Wayne Wichern, through The Sewing Workshop in San Francisco. This is a 2 day class, today being the first, and next Saturday the second and last day. Wayne is a sweet and soft-spoken teacher, with a wonderful sense of style. You can see from the 1st photo that he has an incredible collection of vintage and new hat blocks. (photo only shows a fraction of his bounty!) The first block I fell in love with was a delightful 'circus-like' conical shape. Wayne's response was, "Well I have never done that in straw, but it might be fun..." (Normally this form is done in felt and the top is pushed in for an indented look) I found a lovely 'old lavender' straw and began the process of stretching and tying.
Second, I found another wild shape, one with 6 indentations (kind of like a flu pipe) - I should have known that Wayne would once again say, "Well I have never tried that in straw, but in might be interesting..." (I have a tendency to push the river when creating - and today was no exception...) This one I decided to first use a black straw, but it was too short to make it all the way down, so I added another straw, tobacco colored this time, to the bottom rungs. This is a photo of the mold, I forgot to photograph the tied piece and will post it next week...
For my third hat I decided I should do something more 'normal' and found a lovely little 'cloche' form. Not wanting it to be completly ordinary, I added a few nips and tucks on top. The straw for this one was hand-dipped so it has a lovely half tone to it.
Last photos are of Wayne showing us the details of Millinery, (I loved that he kept stressing that this art-form is very 'low tech'!) and how one really has to use your whole body to make a hat conform to the blocks...
I have a zillian ideas, including how to make my own blocks, (wooden ones are hard to find and generally expensive). On the way home I went to the local drug store and bought some plastic plant holders and tupper-ware I thought might make interesting shapes... My brain is zooming. But I won't be able to try any new inventions until next week... I am off tomorrow to teach my 'Figural Paper Theater' to 15 women in Petaluma! Have a great Sunday!!!
So do you have yours yet??? I just can't decide... Flowers are a definite go, but how many and how high? Look at these by one of my favorite Milliners Stephen Jones. His 'flights of fancy' are breathtaking and certainly eyecatching! Which would you choose?
We know dogs to be honest, faithful and they generally never let you down. (Try not to think about your favorite pair of shoes that now look like chew-toys) Foo dogs of China, look a bit like lions and are protectors and defenders. They often have mischievous and almost devilish looks to them, with huge eyes and fangs. Their threatening appearance is believed by the Chinese to guard against evil spirits. Also known as a 'Celestial dog', and the 'Happiness dog' these 'Foo Dog Baby Hats' were made by young Chinese Mothers as tailsmen to protect their newborn children from evil and harm. May all babes born in this howling good year, find happiness and safety in their lives!
New for this spring will be my class on 'silk ribbon embroidery'. Using a beautiful selection of silk ribbons, a black or cream colored beret and only 5 different stitches, you will create a wearable art treasure sure to become a favorite for years to come. This victorian craft is so satisfying and quick, I am totally hooked. I also have a blouse and jacket in the works. More photos later. Check in with the Castle for time and date. (see sidebar link)