So I cruised ahead as planned and made Simplicity 4700. This is a pattern from my mom's stash that has always fascinated me. Over the years, I've looked at it numerous times and thought about making it. Recently, I ran into this design for sale here and got to see what it looks like made-up, for the first time. So, I pulled out my mom's pattern and traced the pieces off. I hadn't remembered that the instructions were missing. So, I scrutinized the images of the hat, trying to determine the construction method. I thought that it had an inverted box pleat at the back. So, I contacted Lauren at Wearing History and inquired after the directions. She directed me to the pattern on her site and I ordered it (and the 30's Toppers, too!) so I could have at the directions and stash away my mom's delicate copy.
Generally speaking, I don't leave much of anything alone, when I am supposed to be following directions. After I had traced this pattern off and looked at the photos of it online, I decided that the brim was probably much too large and scaled it down. I decided to do away with the gathering at the sides and I considered making the false front more narrow. For whatever reason, I left that alone. I also lengthened the tails of the scarf by a couple of inches and rounded out the angular hems. So, when the directions arrived, I was ready to put this thing together.
I am very glad I picked up the directions. It is only three pieces, but, the construction is not that intuitive. Now that I've put it together once, it really wasn't hard. But, the scarf attachment at the edge of the brim is really quite ingenious and not exactly what I thought it was, judging by the images. The notions list calls for tailors' canvas. I used a regular medium weight cotton canvas from JoAnn Fabrics and that worked fine. I also employed techniques that are commonly used in modern baseball hat construction. I stitched the canvas and the underside of the brim together in concentric rings, then attached the upper brim fabric right sides together, trimmed close to the stitching, then turned it, favoring the upper edge. I assembled the upper front in the same manner.
This pattern was designed to be cut from either purchased fabric or a 24"x24" bandana. I am sure it appeared most commonly in the bandana form and would look a heck of a lot better in that than this wacko fabric I chose. But, the Monopoly fabric is 100% cotton, has the lighter weight I was after and it was a piece that I wouldn't have cried over if this didn't turn out. I wore it a bit at work yesterday, just to give my coworkers a laugh. The giant "false storefront" effect is too much! So, I am going to tinker with this pattern a bit more. I plan on changing the size and shape of both the upper and lower brim and fiddling with the scarf a bit more, too. I've got some rayon challis I'd like to work this up in. Not only would the lighter fabric be nice, but, historically a good choice as well. Synthetics were booming in the 40s; the war had made silk a scarce commodity. I feel a new era of Scarf Cult coming on!
Pictured here is my 1905 Singer. It was manufactured in Elizabeth, NJ on October 2nd, 1905 and it just had a birthday! If you have an older Singer machine that you would like dated, just send the serial number to email@example.com and they will tell you all about it.
Buster was my coach as I worked on this project. He was so thoughtful to remind me to take breaks while I worked. It was very kind of him to sacrifice his own comfort for lap sitting, belly rubs and ear scratching so that I would not become fatigued. Now I must move on to new sweaters for the boys. I just looked up and it is snowing!
More photos are here.