The craftings of a shadowy figure...

Friday, April 30, 2010

The Queen Bee's Derby Hat

So I promised to post this year's Derby project...

I made a hat for a boss who definitely evoked more 'His Girl Friday' than 'My Fair Lady' when I considered the possible style.  I knew I didn't want anything frou-frou, she is just not that kind of girl.  But I really wasn't sure what to do.  I didn't even know what she would wear - not that she did either! (I hope she does now!)

I did a little research.  I looked up Derby images and there was a little highlight of a milliner who's work was being shown as part of the Derby festivities.  The collection was comprised of nods to former Derby winners.  And the hat that caught my attention as appropriately understated was what is known as a 'pancake hat'.

I thought about things that summed her up and I realized there had been an inside joke about her being the Queen Bee.  But what I could do with that - I wasn't exactly sure. However in the recesses of my twisted little mind, I thought that a Pancake hat would make a chic bee-hive... 

So, I got to work looking up how to jimmy-rig hat-forms and use craft-store felt... I went crazy saving pictures and tips.  I took awhile because I think it intimidated me.  Someone I knew (that wasn't my little sister) would be wearing this - in public.

I ended up using a goldenrod felt, some purple/gold mesh, and some fuschia ribbon trim.  It's only decor is a gold queen bee trimmed with the wrong side of purple crushed velvet.  An elastic strap is worn to the back of the head so that the hat tips toward the forehead.

From the e-mail that I got once the package arrived, I think she liked it:

That is the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen.  I’m all abuzz.

It will really sting when no one else at Derby has this hat.

I think it will pollinate a new fashion trend.

So I am hoping for some good pictures of the Queen Bee and her hat at the derby very soon!

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