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Sunday, 26 April 2009

Millinery part 1

So, hi non existent readers! Ha.

I've been terribly slack lately - life has gotten in the way, what with work, love, loss of love, more love, shopping, flat hunting, starting a course etc etc.

Anyway - possibly the most interesting vintage type thing to happen to me in a while is that I just started a short course in millinery at the London College of Fashion. I know, coolness.

Anyway - I thought I'd write a little about that going forward, both as a way of keeping the lessons somewhere for my future reference and by way of making me update this darned thing.

So, my first class was last Wednesday. The teacher is the most fabulous man called Andrew - really approachable - hardly the stern fashionista I had been fearing.

There are about 15 of us in the class - mostly women with some degree of experience, aside from myself, and one older man.

So - this week we did a lot of talking and started making a hard holding band - something that stays inside the hat whilst its being made to hold it firm. This band is made of two layers of bias cut buckram, stitched together and reinforced with wire (pictures to follow - when I find my bloomin' camera).

So - millinery facts - week 1:

Buckram is a coarsely woven cotton impregnated with blue - often used as a stiffening inside hats
Millinery felt is most often made from rabbit fur - that’s right, dead rabbits - so the vegans out there should take note

All millinery fabrics are cut on the bias to allow for give - that’s why millinery fabrics used to come in 18 inch bolts

Holding up your middle finger with a thimble on is called a milliners salute!

OK - that’s it so far. I'll be sure to keep this updated.