OK, so maybe Kate wouldn't love this hat, but I think it's cute.
Some of you still have time to rush out and purchase a few millinery supplies if you would like to make that Mothers' Day Fascinator! Well if you need a little help, this post is for you.
When a Web surfer enters a query into Google or any other search engine, they are given a list of sites that satisfy that query. So, over the past week my site statistics have shown that the majority of the queries that led to my site asked the questions: "How to make a fascinator?" and "How to make a fascinator base?" Today, since it has been some time since I've been in touch with you, I'm making a hasty post; I'll address the fascinator base (frame, foundation).
I've touched on the fascinator before when I introduced the buckram fascinator frame in a previous post, but this time I'll show you how to make a very easy fascinator base using sinamay, no traditional foundation blocking needed. Don't forget those fascinator tutorials published by Threads Magazine; they were absolutely wonderful. Also, check out how to make a bow, including how to make faux feathers. Don't leave the site until you've queried on millinery, hat making, hat trimming, and hat embellishment for even more millinery tutorials.
If you don't want to make your own frames, besides being an excellent source for vintage millinery supplies, California Millinery manufactures buckram frames on site of all types, shapes, and sizes and at reasonable prices. Here is a link to some of their smaller frames. These frames do not in any manner represent what they have in stock. You will have to call them for more information, since the site is incomplete. It would probably be worth your while to order frames from California Millinery even if you don't live in Los Angeles, especially if you are interested in purchasing frames in bulk; they will ship anywhere. Diego is fabulous!!!
I've just published my first YouTube video, and I'm so excited!! The video demonstrates how to swirl grosgrain ribbon. I've noticed that many of you new to millinery have gathers and gaps in your headbands, your sidebands do not hug the side of your hats, and the edges of your hats have the same issues. Knowing how to swirl your grosgrain ribbon will help to solve this problem. Also, please realize that natural materials cut on the bias can be swirled. As a matter of fact, you may want to cover the edge of your base frame with sinamay bias strips. Do a little homework, explore the free online millinery books listed here in the sidebar. If you are not familiar with bias, swirling the ribbon, grosgrain, etc., it can all be found here just by following the reference links in the sidebar. I hope you enjoy the video..
Now to the tutorial....
First make a circular (or other shape) pattern and from three layers of sinamay, cut out the desired size.
Using a buttonhole or whip stitch, attach millinery wire as shown in the buckram fascinator tutorial.
Swirl the grosgrain ribbon as shown in the video below. Note that the ribbon should be a natural fiber ribbon or at least 40 to 60 percent natural. Here in the States, at least in my vicinity, this ribbon is called millinery grosgrain or sawtooth ribbon. I'm sure there are other names for it. This ribbon has a "tooth" and it is not smooth on its edges.
Using a stab or catch stitch, attach the grosgrain ribbon. See the list of stitch videos in the sidebar. Sorry, I have a tendency to misname stitches; I'll correct this in a future post and or revise this one. I just do it, no thought, second nature.
Over a bowl or a hat block, any concave surface, steam the fascinator base using your pressing iron. Since the sinamay is sized (don't use unsized sinamay for this project) and because sinamay is a very pliable fabric, it will form to the curve of the mold. Also, it will be stiffer than it was before it was steamed.
Take one of your bases and trim it to your desire. For the hat above I've sewn one of these bases inside of the hat. Please note that you do not have to cut your bases out in the same shape. You could cut out bases of different shapes.
I prefer a hat elastic for attaching fascinators to the head because it can be positioned to almost any position without removing it. If you don't have hat elastics (elastics with metal points on the end), take a large eyed needle, thread it with elastic, run it through the grosgrain, and anchor it with a stitch and a knot on each side of the base. This actually works better than hat elastics because the metal tips have a tendency to slide off the end of the elastic. Also, to avoid the metal slippage, I will crimp the metal with my wire cutters or my jewelry crimps.
For my non-English speaking friends that use a translator on my site, I will have to explain a few things that may not be clear in the video, since instructions appear written across the video frames. For the edges of your hats and fascinators