My latest obsession that kept me from finishing other projects was the leather top hat. Excitingly enough, another project actually for me. I do manage to go for those sorts of projects every now and again.
I did a pattern out of poster board, based off of measurements and such. largely based off of me figuring it out as I want along, to be honest. Once that was reasonably what I was after, I pulled the mockup back apart and laid it out on my leather. I started with just plain old tooling leather.
With pieces cut out, I used wool daubers to swipe on the dye, which let me get a more mottled effect. Which is totally awesome. Once that had dried, I did a quick wet seal on it. Basically running it under the faucet to rinse out any excess dye, then dried everything again between paper towels.
That finished out, I played with options, and decided to put holes along the inside of the brim and the bottom edge of the main body first. Then I riveted the main body piece. I went with the double row of rivets for purely aesthetic reasons. Stitching or even a single row of rivets would have worked just as well.
To stitch the brim in place, I wet down the inside edge of it and then flared it up a little before stitching to get it to sit more how I wanted. From there, I could wet the brim itself and play with shaping until I found the brim shape I was after. Which I actually found rather quickly after first toying.
The top was originally going to have an amount of flare, but once I hit this point, I actually changed my mind and cut back the top piece and re-dyed the edges. I still had to stretch the top just a little to make things sit how I wanted, but the effect on the shaping is very subtle.
I actually stitched the top twice. Once while wet for stretching, then pulled it out and re-stitched to get it tight and perfect.
From there, I used a block out sealing layer. This didn't change the dye much, which is what I was after.
The hat band piece I also did myself. It currently isn't attached quite how I intend to really have it, but I have not finished the hat pin I want to do. By which I mean, I haven't quite figured out what exactly I want for it. For the time being, I am just using a pin to hold the hat band in place. I intend to keep it removable, so that I can swap in alternate hat bands easily if I ever want to change things up a little. Probably I will add some little hook catches for that purpose.
The band itself is some awesome fabric I found at a shop in Hawaii. (Yes, I went to a fabric store while on vacation on a tropical island.) I cut the strip and wrapped it around a semi-heavy bit of craft fuse stuff. I ironed it in place, then stitched the back edge by hand. I also folded over the one end and stitched that to give it a little nicer of an end piece.
And here are the photos.
2 weeks ago