Burgundy 1940s labled Lancaster Wool
Searching the net, I found a few others of this shape.
Grey Tear Drop, One of 3 for $50, Doeskin Felt
Hat early 1940s The Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Navy Blue Lancaster Oval Brimmed Hat $20
It's difficult to see, when it's not on the head but it's so cute! It's worn tilted to one side and down over the right eye and results in a very Noir look.
I proudly brought mine home intending to clean and and fix (it had clearly once had a feather and such) only to find I have absolutely NOTHING to wear it with. With the exception of two steampunk dresses (already matched to steampunk hats) I actually own very little burgundy clothing. All my reds are true reds. Well, I didn't want to overhaul my wardrobe just for the one new accessory, so I decided I had better learn how to dye a hat!
DIY ~ Hat Dieing
Internet informs me that one can use paints designed to absorb (for such things as hand-painting silk) that are heat activated. I opted for Jacquard Textile Colors. I also decided on black as I figured it would cover the best and go with the most outfits.
- Special Paint
- Protective Clothing
- Protective Surface
- Paint Brush
- Blow Dryer
- Lint brush
- Small scissors
I did a test paint on the back and dried with hair dryer. It looked good and seemed to adhere well so I went to work painting starting with the bottom. I tried to rub the paint in with the brush, so it wouldn't clump or cause too much of a sheen. The paint absorbed and dried FAST.
I dried the underside for a day in front of our big old room heater (the wall wart). Flipped it and then painted the crown and the brim.
The I dried it again for several days, luckily it was cold out so we had the heater on a lot.
During the interim, I bought better wider stiffer brush (just inexpensive ones from a craft store). Throughout the process I also kept having to thin the paint.
Lastly, I did one final coat over the outside with the paint thinned to about 50/50.
The felt became stiffer and less soft than the original hat, but the look is what I wanted. I added a few small feathers and a magnet to the inside of the feather holding tube so that I could put on a flower to match whatever dress I chose to wear it with. (If you want to know how I made those, here's the DIY.)
Photo showing finished hat with a simple matched black bow magnet from the second round of hat fancies (post to come).
It worked well enough, but the hat still has a slight reddish sheen in bright daylight. I didn't paint the interior of the crown, since that won't be visible and I wanted it to stay nice and soft, and not come off black on my hair!
* If I had it to do again? I'd thin the paint 50/50 from the get go and use the bigger stiffer brush. This would mean three thinner coats, but would be faster and worth the effort as I think it would keep the texture of the felt better.
Now I just need a reason to wear it.
Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.