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The Ongoing Saga of Felted Hats

November 01, 2006

Picture heavy post ahead!

Okay, it started with the Frankenhat. This hat has been so named because I've hand felted it two times, boiled it, cut and re-sewed and trimmed and re-felted it. It went from way big to too small ::sigh:: Currently the Frankenhat is on StyroQueen, awaiting my decision to futz more or cut my losses.


On to hat #2, the Motif'd hat. I've already posted about it once, but decided that it would benefit from another trip through my washer (now that I've figured out how to use my front-loader to felt). Apparently I got ahead of myself when I titled it "Successful Felted Hat", because I'm still not all that thrilled. The colorwork turned out fine, but I'm thinking that I don't much care for the squared-off crown.

Motif'd Hat

And the BRIM. Oh, the brim is making me crazy. The pattern (still on FT Felted Hats II) calls for the first 2 rows to be purled, then increases on the third row. This makes the edge of the brim curl up. I know, it's on purpose, but the edge of MY brim isn't smooth and pretty. In fact, it's lumpy, bumpy, and only vaguely hints at circular.

Bumpy Brim

I'm thinking that I'll trim off the offending edge. Of course, I'll have to re-wet it to pretty up the edge. And reblock it.

THAT is where I'm still having problems. StyroQueen has a smaller head than I do. I don't have any bowls in the house that are the correct circumference, or if they are, they're too deep and I get the whole cone-head thing going on. One suggestion I got from J is to add some layers of papier-mache to StyroQueen to fatten her up.

Then, of course, what to do with the brim? Once a hat will fit properly onto StyroQueen, where will the brim set to dry? I don't want to cut her in half! I picked up a styrofoam ring at Michael's awhile back. I'm thinking that I can slip it down to ear-level on StyroQueen, support it with t-pins, and have a flat surface that's the right level for blocking the brim. Do you think that will work? Thinking of it, StyroQueen may need to be renamed after all that plastic (or paper and foam) surgery. Maybe I'll start calling her Joan Rivers.

Most recently, there is the Purple Felted Hat. Using what I learned with the Fiber Trends pattern, I made up my own prototype, writing down each step as I went. I was hoping for a more graceful crown and a little bit smaller brim. Here's how it started:
Purple Pre-felt

And here's how it ended (over-caffeinated pictures):

purple hat front
purple hat side

As you can probably tell, it's too small (yet again). Not quite Elmer Fudd, but small. And the brim is too small for me.

BUT! The good news is that it fits J pretty darned perfectly. Although she said she'd like about 3/4" more in the brim, she didn't think twice about claiming it for her own (she says it will go great with her turquoise coat) and not taking it off her head until she was out of my sight, just in case I was having second thoughts. In fact, she was in such a hurry to get away that I didn't even have a chance to click a pic to show how perfect it is for her!

So, here are the stats: 3 hats knit and felted, two from the Fiber Trends pattern, one from my own. 2 hats that are too small. 2 hats that have had or will have surgery. ZERO hats that I would wear in public.

I am NOT giving up! I've got a new hat OTN as we speak. News at eleven....

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