Category Archives: hat

HSF #7 – The Long Delayed Beret

I had such a difficult time deciding on this challenge. So I just put it off. And then it took forever for me to get around to getting pictures taken. Because it’s summer in July…in Florida.

My hope was that I would find an ideal hat I could crochet. I had terrible luck finding a pattern I was happy with that was within the right time frame.

Finally, I decided to just go with a children’s pattern, enlarged to fit an adult.

The pattern I finally settled on is a charming children’s tam o’shanter.

tam o shanter


Then I found several charming pictures online of some other ladies who decided it was a charming thing to put on their head.

1920's with tam o s

about 1927 Age about 18 years old   Estimate born 1909  3 years



So I found myself some cute bright blue cotton crochet thread and got to work. I decided start off with working the pattern exactly as described, then I could make any changes as I went along.

It turned out that I didn’t actually need to make any changes to the pattern. It nicely worked up a beret that fits my head. For anyone else who wants to make this pattern, I don’t have an unusually small, childish head. Just a normal sized one.

revised for blog1


revised for blog2

I was told by my fashion consultant/photographer (otherwise known as my sister) that the hat looked silly with all my hair up, so I left it down ala Mary Pickford. See, my proof.


The Challenge: Tops and Toes

Fabric: blue cotton thread

Pattern: Tam O’Shanter Pattern from Woolco Knitting and Croching Manual 

Year: 1916

Notions: it’s not exactly a notion, but I crocheted with a size 2 crochet needle

How historically accurate is it?: Very, the only non accurate part of this project is that I used modern thread. So I’m going to give myself 100%.

Hours to complete: I’d say about 20 hours.

First worn: For pictures, but this hat will definitely get wearing this fall/winter.

Total cost: About $6, this pattern took three balls of thread.


The Great Crochet Project or my excuse for being behind

My project for the Under It All Challenge has been put a bit on the back burner, even though it’s late before I even started. I’ve got plans to make a pair of open crotch drawers and another petticoat. First everything was put off until last minute sewing for Olustee could be finished up (which was only slightly successful). Then last week I was under a school-based time crunch in the form of making sure grades were updated for Progress Reports. And frankly I’m feeling a bit burned out and harried with the ever looming, all powerful FCAT (Florida’s all encompassing standardized test) rapidly approaching. It’s only five weeks away. So instead of sewing, my spare time has been spent working on The Great Crochet Project. Something that I can do on the couch while watching Doctor Who episodes and eating Girl Scout cookies with my mom.

I’m also trying to put the finishing touches on a dress I’m remaking for my sister in time for another reenactment next weekend. We’ll see how that goes.

But I am resolved to get either the drawers or a petticoat done by Wednesday.

In the meantime, here are some shots of my completed Wine Dress and Muff, along with the Striped Berry Hat.


And the pictures below show me modelling a giant circle crocheted shawl that took me the better part of a year to finish. It was totally worth the effort, it’s very warm and uses a pineapple motif that I fell in love with.



HSF #1 – Make Do and Mend – The Striped Berry Hat

Better late than never.

I originally intended to redo a dress for my sister. Something that turned into a more monstrous project than I was originally anticipating. Also it’s hard to do fittings with no access to my sister, which is slowing the process down.

So instead I decided to go ahead and cross another project I’ve been meaning to do off of my list. A hat, because no real lady would ever be caught outside without the proper head covering.

I am at heart a very thrifty girl who also enjoys being crafty. It was a hard choice between the many lovely types of hats. But really, I’m not sure how well a bonnet will look on my oval shaped face. Plus I just really like the look of the leghorn hats.

leghorn2 leghorn

I’ve read a couple blog posts about people who have taken straw hats from a big box craft store and remade them into history appropriate hats. After a bit of searching for how to’s I found a marvelously helpful post by the Semptress on how to reblock a straw hat.

So I took a basic straw hat. Really nothing fancy. One that looked just like this one. This is where the made do part comes in because I’m just making do with craft store supplies, which may be stretching the definition of the challenge.

straw hat

I didn’t have any specialized supplies (which may prove to be my undoing). I used my head as the shaping block and put up my hair in a style that is similar to the one I usually wear to reenactments.

I got a giant bowl of warm water and started dipping the brim into the water. It didn’t get wet immediately, so I went around a couple of times. The crown needed to stretch a little bigger to fit my head better, so I stuck the top of the hat in. Basically I dunked the whole thing in, getting the brim wetter than the rest, because that was the part that I wanted to shape most. Then shook off the excess water and plopped the whole thing down directly on my head. After that I ran and got a towl to mop up my drips. I don’t always think ahead. 🙂

The leghorn style was fairly easy for me to shape. I gently pressed the crown the hat down onto my head, stretching it to fit comfortably. Then I shaped the brim so that it hung down over my forehead in front and down over my next in back. Afterwards I sat and watched three episodes of Doctor Who with my mom. By the time we were done the hat was dry enough I felt I could safely leave it hanging on an upside down vase, my hat rest of choice.

I bought a remnant of this lovely striped fabric, the maroon color almost perfectly matches my new dress. I cut two three-inch strips, put the right sides together, sewed the long edges, and turned it right side out again.


Then came the difficult process of figuring out what to do with my ridiculously long piece of fabric ribbon.


In the end I decided to take my inspiration from this photo.

leghorn 3

The fabric ribbon got put into a V in the front and meets at the back, where it trails down in two streamers.

And…TA DA!!! My first finished hat!


From the back!


Now it’s on my head!!!


The Challenge: Make Do and Mend

Fabric: 6 inches of striped cotton

Pattern: None, just me fooling around.

Year: early 1860’s

Notions: black thread, dark red berries, and a straw hat

How historically accurate is it? I’d say about a 6. From what I’ve been able to determine they don’t make straw hats the same anymore, modern hats have a much wider and coarser band of straw braid. The berries are modern, which I’m sure is made through some fancy, nonhistorically accurate process. Otherwise the design is accurate to the time period.

Hours to complete: About 15 minutes to shape, 3 hours for my reformed hat to dry, and 1 hour to trim.

First worn: Not yet, I plan on wearing it to Olustee next month.

Total cost: This one comes in at under $10. The hat cost about $3, two bunches of berries on Christmas sale were $1, and the fabric was a remnant I bought for $3 and change.