Min makes hats

I’ve been making hats and headwear recently so I thought that I should share. The first hat I made is a little pillbox style Elizabethan hat which will look great with my mustard loose gown. While not wildly popular you do see ladies wearing this styles of cap in a few images, seems to have been more a German style but I will admit that I haven’t done a ton of research. I had the hat base and I think that it looks cool. Mine is in black velvet with gold and silver trim including

  • A silver Caidan cross (iron on)
  • Pearls
  • Silver rose studs
  • Laid gold cord loops
  • A pair of laurels to make a wreath (also iron on)
Black velvet cap.

My second hat is a Dutch cap and veil of the mid 1560s. I did quite a bit more research on this one. As far as I can determine there are no extant caps or veils of this exact time and the style does vary quite a bit decade to decade. Unlike the English caps the Dutch ones do seem to have been made in two parts like the later muffin cap and feature lace at both the face edge and between the headband and back part of the cap.

Mine is made out of fine linen and antique lace. The linen isn’t particularly crisp and need starching after washing. The Dutch were masters of linen starching and introduced their skill into England where it became highly popular.

First some example images so show the effects I’m after.

You find heaps more on my Pinterest board. If you look closely you can see what I mean about the lace between the front part of the cap and the back. It’s possible that the entire back part is lace and some other image certainly suggest this but I don’t have that much lace so a single strip has to suffice.

The veil is certainly wired at the front edge, the exact curvature varies from image to image but I quite like the flattened top part with the big curves to the side that then meet the face at the top of the cheekbones. The back falls straight and quite long.

Mine is silk organza which beautifully combines crispness and lightness. It is 55cm wide and cut across the width so about 115cm long. The front selvedge edge is wrapped around a 50cm length of #19 milliner’s wire with the end 3-4 mm folded in and stitched down. The length of the veil is sewn into a tube until about 20cm from the front edge and then pressed flat two small tucks are taken just after the end of that seam so that the head part of the veil is slightly shaped – this helps it stay in place.

I find that two veil pins are useful to keep everything just so and support the veil. One goes in flat across the top of the head side to side just where the poufy back of the cap starts, the other goes in at the nape of the neck to join the veil and cap. Together these help keep things in place when your veil gets caught on something or you sit on it.