How was your Memorial Day weekend? We did our traditional routine, hanging around the house and of course, attended the Southern New Mexico Wine Festival where we stock up on our annual supply of local vintages. Some bottles are old stand bys for one reason or another. One we buy because we (okay, I) like the name (Girls are Meaner). Yeah yeah, I admit I wouldn’t buy it if it had a style number instead. I bought an extra bottle this year for my sister in law (I hope she’s not reading this) in celebration of my niece’s birthday. I’ve always thought it’s moms who should get gifts on their kids birthdays.
As ever, I peruse the vendor’s booths for DE goodies. This show is still very young and doesn’t attract a lot of apparel and sewn products vendors but the numbers slowly increase. There was one very bad vendor of imported “silk” tops. These were lousy and it annoys me because people always have the idea that import=crappy and it’s not true now if it ever was. We get crappy imports in the U.S. because the buyer specifies that level of quality (cost) in the product and we rarely have a true picture of a given nation’s capability. Anyway, in a show of perhaps karmic retribution was another vendor of hats imported from Madagascar (above). The quality of these hats was immaculate, simply exquisite. Besides, my ears always perk up at “Madagascar” because I’ve been trying to source a specific sort of sewing contractor there for years. Madagascar has the labor pool to do a particularly difficult form of needlework that is unparalleled internationally. And it would seem that nearly no one knows it.
These hats are incredibly well made. I couldn’t find a raw seam inside or out. I love how the sides (A) of the hat cup over to meet the top circular portion (B). I’m guessing the hat may be steamed to shape. Then again, judging from the quality, I would not be the least bit surprised if the top circular portion was actually smaller than the total circumference of the hat sides (i.e. negative ease). I also noted the seam running across the brim (C) but the pattern did not jump up and automatically make itself for me. That was strange in retrospect; typically, patterns spatially unfold themselves for me without any effort on my part. I then just draw them out. Maybe I’m losing my touch.
So boys and girls, your challenge for today is to configure a pattern for this hat. Bonus points to anyone who can explain how to sew it, with no raw edges exposed. You can click on the above images for larger file versions of these photos.
[Amended] If interested, you can buy these hats ($40) on the web. Site has been updated and click repaired. Icing on the cake; the vendor is a member of the Fair Trade Federation so you can buy with confidence. Word has it this hat is a loss leader to promote the launch and its price is anticipated to increase substantively. I’m getting the sapphire blue one.