Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Quills and Spills










I bought some ostrich feathers that were seconds thinking I would dye them. They were just too raggedy and the quills were very thick, so I striped them of all the fluff and boiled them in a 6 quart pot of water to soften them. While they were boiling I made a pattern out of a piece of wire the approximate length of the quills and bent it into the shape I wanted the quills to be. With the wire as a pattern I fashioned make shift jig with pins on an old message board. When they dried I got out the air brush, spilled paint and made a huge mess. One tip read instructions first, then push button. Eventually I got them painted and dried and sewn on the little cocktail hat. I wanted the edge or head-size of the hat to be rolled so I wired the edge and pulled one end of the wire until it curled under and sewed the grosgrain over the wired edge.
Update on the shoe, I can't get it to stick on my head how did Dali balance his?






























Hey I've added some photos of a re-block of this block. The headsize is 22" and the crown-side mid point is 24" the "Small Brim Theory" didn't work.. Sorry Nina! What did work and makes a Sixties-ish pill box is the tip pushed down. I'll use this block only for the tip..

13 comments:

The Hatdiva said...

Isabella Blow is sorry she killed herself. She needs to wear this hat!

Cath - Pebbles Hats said...

Found your blog via Cristina at mat Hatter and just wanted to say that I love your hats. they are strangely weird and wonderful.

Cristina - madhatter wannabe said...

I love the fact that you're putting so many pictures of the process and I find a great idea the makeshift rig for the quills, I didn't know one could do that (don't have much experience with feathers).

Ah, and the hat looks fab. Where do you get all these wonderful blocks?!

Finally... I saw the Schiaparelli shoe hat at the Victoria & Albert exhibition about Surrealism, and it's completely made out of felt (black felt with the sole made of fuschia felt)... and I think I had idealized it because I found it a bit disappointing (I thought it would be better made)...

Armando y Montez said...

Thank You! Everyone I blush, By the way,are you talking to me?
Cristina.. I have the catalog and the companion book for V&A exhibit and I saw the Schiaparelli and the Dali Exhibit in Philadelphia Pennsylvania a few years back I stayed for hours. I saw two of the Shoe Hats one belonging to Gala Dali, probably the one you saw with the fuchsia sole the other was black on both sides. Both were amazing exhibits. I'll bet the V&A was knock your shoe hat off your head.
As far as experience with feathers. I just try something until it works. I buy blocks from antique shops (we used to travel a lot), ebay and other milliners or people that have inherited them and have no need for them.
Cath-Peebles Hats Thank You! Hey Hatdiva Thanks!!...

Cristina - madhatter wannabe said...

Hi Susan,
I'm with Nina at the moment and she thinks that it might be possible to block the felt all the way down (with a cord in the middle as you did), which would result in a hat with a brim that goes upwards (bubble/basket like)... You would have to turn the bottom part inside out. What do you think? Are you willing to give it a try?
Cristina

Armando y Montez said...

Hey There Cristina and Nina, I will give it a try this week and Cristina, I will use a fur felt! When I first got my hands on this block I thought the tip or crown part popped down into the crown. I'll try that too just to see what happens. I just used it for a calot this time.
Hello To Nina, I've been admiring your work along side of Cristinas. You are Brilliant! So much artist talent in one place? My head spins.

Cristina - madhatter wannabe said...

Hi Montez,
Yes, what you say makes more sense, to pop in the tip! duh!
But now I have my doubts... so if it doesn't work out you blame Nina ok? Hehe! Just kidding.
It's just that I personally cannot envision the resulting hat with such a small crown, it would have to be a 60's hat, but even the Christian Dior hats on this 1967 clip (that sit back on the head) have a pretty deep crown:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJhMWzDwTRQ
Nina is convinced, but I don't see it to be honest. I'm more inclined to think that you can use the block to make a bubble hat, or just the tip... I don't want you to waste a perfectly good felt!

Armando y Montez said...

In this case I will use up my wool felts.. Then there will be no one to blame!

Cristina - madhatter wannabe said...

Wow... turned into a pillbox... I simply did not see it coming! It's difficult to imagine the result of a complicated block from just seeing the wood shape.

It's a cool shape all the same, but not your style I guess, hehe.

Thanks for giving it a try!

Armando y Montez said...

You Know Cristina, I thought it would look like the "Bubble Pill Box" you described. After I pushed the tip in I thought egads, a Jackie-O. I'll use it mostly for the tip!

Cristina - madhatter wannabe said...

Nina wants me to tell you that she made a "Schiaparelli shoe" hat with pink sole for a Dali movie that was filmed in Barcelona. When come to Barcelona you can ask her about it!

Armando y Montez said...

That's Fantastic! My eyes are watering with joy! I may have seen that movie? maybe not? Was it a BBC? See you in Barcelona!!

Armando y Montez said...

I forgot to add I wish the block made the hat Nina envisioned.. It would be oh SO MUCH to my liking...