If I learned anything this week unrelated to indy pattern testing, it's that a good hat is hard to make.
After mixed results from McCall's 2205 (too shallow for my head as drafted), I decided to give another hat pattern in my stash a try: Vogue 8893 from 1994.
This pattern includes what one might call a bucket hat, fishing hat, or rain hat.
I call it a fiasco.
NOTE: It has come to my attention that if you cover the nose of the model on this envelope (below), he looks like a sun-damaged version of me. I do see the resemblance and if I had a more conventionally shaped head, perhaps I'd be modeling Vogue hats too.
Anyway, rather than cut the pattern in (what I thought was) my size, I traced it, something I almost never do -- that's how excited I was about this project!
I needn't have bothered. It was a mess: nothing fit right, the crown was too high, the brim was too narrow, I could go on. Finally, having invested twice as many hours on this hat as I had in reading about the indy pattern-testing controversy (six and three, respectively), I decided I was going to throw the instructions out the window (figuratively) and just make it work.
My fabric was the same vintage gold toile de jouy I'd used to make that double-breasted jacket muslin. I interfaced everything, as directed. PET PEEVE: Vogue has you use the same pattern pieces for the interfacing as you do for the hat, but cut off 1/2" around each piece of interfacing -- that a lot of wasted interfacing!
There are a few things I do like about the style of this hat. The top has a raised, topstitched rim around it, giving the hat a more constructed look.
And rather than stitch the brim right sides together and turning right-side-out, the two layers are stitched wrong sides together and the outer edge is finished with bias. That turned out well. In retrospect, however, I think I prefer the way the edge looked unfinished -- more fishing cap-like. Live and learn.
I ended up not lining the hat but just finishing the inside seams with rayon seam binding.
I like this hat, even if it's not as flattering (imo) as the McCall's hat I struggled with earlier in the week. If I'm going to make any more hats, I'll work from my own head measurements rather than from a commercial pattern. There are just too many fitting variables for these things to work right out of the envelope. Or maybe I just have a weird head.
I doubt I'll be using this pattern again although you never know. I can't recommend it.
And that, my friends, is the end of my hat adventure for the week.
I'm a native New Yorker and sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using vintage sewing machines and vintage patterns, in addition to sewing for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!