Making a 1920′s Garden Party Hat

I have been in the process of making 1920′s afternoon outfits for my husband and I for the Garsby Summer Afternoon in Oakland next month.  I have been wanting to go to this for a long time and finally am!  My outfit of a 1928 seafoam green and pale yellow floral chiffon dress is nearly done now that I have finished my hat.  I just have some lace gloves to make.  I finished my husband’s blue striped dress shirt and vest and we bought a vintage foulard tie and tweed pants to go with it.  I just have a golf cap to make for him.  I wasn’t certain that I would be this far along when I started a couple of weeks ago, but this vintage sewing is not particularly challenging, it’s just the task of learning how to do some new things.

In the 1920′s, men and women did not go out without a hat and an important part about my outfit is my hat.  I knew that I didn’t want to wear a cloche and instead wanted a wider brimmed garden party hat and found this pattern to make it.  It is out of print, but I found this on etsy for about $5.

Butterick 4697

Butterick 4697

I have never made a hat before nor have I worked with buckram.  It wasn’t very fun cutting out the buckram pattern, nor was I very good at hot gluing the buckram frame together as I was trying to avoid burning myself.  I got a bit too much glue on it and when I make another hat, I will be certain to avoid that.  I considered using another type of glue, but hot glue gives you pretty much instant results.  I would probably just take my time next time and use a glue that doesn’t burns, even it takes some patience waiting over night for it to dry.

Buckram hat frame

Buckram hat frame

My hat cover is made out of a maize colored silk dupioni that I got from New York Fashion Center Fabrics.  I had ordered a few samples to see what went best with my dress and this was it.  It kind of looks like straw doesn’t it?  It’s fused on with Wonder Under paper backed fusible webbing.  I had never used that stuff before, but I see some great possibilities with it as it can fuse fabric on to just about any surface.  The pattern calls for one cap cover and one lining, but I made an extra cover as my fabric is a light color and seems to show through a bit.

Brim and cap

Brim and cap

It isn’t too difficult to make this hat, just a lot hand sewing that hurts your fingers as you’re sewing through buckram.  Next time, I think I need to put some thimbles on.

Hat with brim sewed on

Hat with brim sewed on

Putting the lining in

Putting the lining in

Finished hat before the trimmings

Finished hat before the trimmings

The pattern calls for 5″ ribbon, but I just made my own of the yellow crepe back satin that I used for my 20′s slip under my dress.  I used this same fabric to make a sash for my dress.

1920s Garden Party Hat

1920s Garden Party Hat

The silk flowers are vintage 1940s czech made flowers that I found on etsy.  I think it needs a little bit more foliage, so I bought another vintage millinery flower that I’ll add when it comes, just as long as it looks good.

Vintage 1940's silk flowers

Vintage 1940′s silk flowers

And this is my creepy felted wool head wearing it.  I made her to display hats, but everyone thinks she’s creepy.  My dog got a hold of a few weeks ago and rippsd her wool hair off.  I haven’t put it back on yet, but I think her scalping is hidden by the hat.

Garden party hat on creppy head

Garden party hat on creppy head

My hat isn’t 100% as perfect as I’d like it to be, but I think it still looks good with my outfit.  And, no, you haven’t missed anything.  I didn’t post my 20′s dress yet.  I’ve been waiting until I had everything done, since you know it’s all about the proper accouterments in the 20′s.  A lady had to have her accessories!  I’m going to take a little 20′s break and whip up my Sew Weekly Reunion dress first, as it’s almost due.  I’m going to make an emerald dress of cotton voile out of a Simplicity pattern that I got from the SWR notions swap.  It’ll be a nice break being back in my element. :)

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Happy Sewing!

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1920′s Garden Party hat breakdown

Pattern used:  Butterick 4697 (OOP)

Fabric:  Maize silk dupioni

Materials:  Buckram and paper backed fusible webbing

Trim:  Yellow crepe back satin and vintage millinery flowers

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  1. […] using this tutorial that I posted on my wedding blog.  As far as my accouterments go:  I made my 1920s silk garden party hat, my shoes are character shoes I got off ebay, my paper parasol is vintage 1920s my mom gave me for […]

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