Monday, June 20, 2016

Hat tricks

One of the things that I don't get to wear nearly enough of is funky hats. I don't often find a hat that I like in the price range I prefer (under 5$, thank you very much!), but when I do, I buy it. Even if it's a little too funky for my taste.

Case in point: This interesting porkpie-style navy blue felt hat with some, well, interesting ornamentation. By interesting, I mean this unfathomable combination of 80's, Aztec, and mariachi. In spite of its questionable trim, I loved its shape. It seemed like the perfect hat to wear on the back of my head like a halo, which has been one of my fashion goals for some time now.

With some trepidation, I removed the trim from the hat. This involved dipping parts of it in hot water to melt the glue holding on the rick-rack. I was worried I'd deform the hat, but fortunately it seemed to have no lasting detrimental effects.

After I was done, it was slightly hideous, but not so hideous that I couldn't fix it with a new hatband!

For this purpose, I decided to use a sheer green wire-edged ribbon that I'd been holding onto, unopened, ever since my wreath-making business never took off back in 2005.

I attached it with sparing use of hot glue, then decorated the back with a conservative little bow. I may want to add some frills and tails to this bow, because it doesn't really look like much when you're wearing it.

I decided to wear the hat as sun protection / a piece of flair to my brother's informal outdoor wedding on May 16. That wedding outfit was a sartorial challenge I'd rather forget, because the weather / the occasion dictated that I wear something modest and warm, (but not too warm), and the best I could come up with was this dowdy combination of long skirt and baggy sweater, which, combined with the hat, made me feel somewhat like the bird woman from Mary Poppins.

And, as you can see, for all my effort, I still failed to perch the hat quite on the back of my head like a halo, thus seeing all my aspirations come to naught!

Hats are both one of my great loves and one of my greatest Waterloos, as, having a rather small head and fine hair, I find almost all of them are too big for me. They never stay put in the best of conditions, but on windy days, they are all but useless. After over a month of feeling sad about the wedding hat that didn't quite live up to the hype (and a hat-wearing bike ride gone terribly wrong) I finally dreamt up a way to keep my hats on my head, no matter how jauntily I angle them.

The solution is a headband inside! Unlike a chin-tie, which is also very Mary Poppins (in case you haven't noticed, a lot of my fashion choices seem to come back to that movie), a headband would never give any hint of its existence. And unlike hat pins, which I also considered, a headband would not require an elaborate hairstyle underneath.

So I found the headband in my collection that I loved the least and sewed it to the front of my hat with a simple loop of thread (it probably won't stay there forever, but this was an experiment).

And when I put it on, I like to believe that it had a little more stability (and a little bit of that gravity-defying oomph that it needed to stay on the back of my head instead of on top as most hats are content to do).
The dog fur will be removed and the ribbon straightened
the next time this hat makes a public appearance!

The trailing bit of thread from the headband attachment
will also be trimmed off!
I have lots of headbands that I don't really wear much, and a couple of hats that are just waiting for a little sturdier attachment, so... Halo hats, here I come!

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