Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Beginnings: A Top Hat (WIP)

Alright, I am making a leather top hat.

Or at least I'm making a variation of a top hat. I'm aiming for something that I would term a "stylized coachman's hat" and if you look up coachman's hat and are unsure of what I mean, I mean more like the tall one rather than the short one. I have to say that this might be turning out to be one of my more ambitious projects. Not because the actual process is so unbelievably hard, but because I'm making my own pattern and this means I have to make sure everything fits together correctly and fits me properly, as well as just looking good in general. And I'm only giving myself one shot, because I only have enough leather for one, and I don't want to buy more.

Because this might end up being rather long I think I'm just going to post pictures with short captions of what's happening rather than going through everything that I did in a more detailed fashion. If I think something looks confusing I might elaborate, or you can ask me anything in the comments.

Playing with some patterns. I just winged the top left one. The others are from Tom Banwell and here.

Tracing the size of the brim from my other top hat.

Figuring the inside size.

Starting on the Crown.

The moment I realized I was making a pattern for underwear.

The finished pattern.

Checking the fit. Need haircut.

Attached brim to crown. Looks suspiciously like cowboy hat. Hope I can fix that.

Disassembled the pattern for tracing.

The pattern cut out.

The reason there are two brims is because the leather is smooth on one side and rough on the other so to fix that problem you make two brims and sandwich them together rough sides in and glue them. I still haven't cut out the inside circle (which will also be the top) because I might shorten that low dip in the middle of the crown piece to make it a little less "stylized". If I do that it might change the size a little and I don't want to cut it too big.

More to come...

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