Forest Flame Millinery

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Making vintage and larger hats

When I had that dreadful feeling on the eve of every bazaars, I knew that this was the end. Selling at bazaars and craft fairs has become a chore of which I dread.

This feeling came about because I have no time to make new pieces for sale. Even if I have the time to make new pieces, I just made small pillboxes because they are more affordable and more acceptable to Singaporean buyers. It is depressing that I am already under selling - my price is a mere one-third of what similar products are selling in UK and USA. At the same time, I have to handle shoppers who mishandled my hats. Making the decision to stop selling at bazaars come easy and I feel so relieve now that I don't have to make new hats simply for bazaars. It's no fun sleeping past midnight and wake up at 5+a.m. to get ready to go to school. If you don't live in Singapore, you may want to know that school in Singapore starts at about 7.25am and as teachers, I like to be in school by 7am for my cuppa. We start with singing national anthem, school song and reciting the pledge before students return to their classroom for lessons.

I will still attend bazaars but probably only during school holidays.

So now I get more time to hone my skills as a beginner milliner. A lot of my millinery skills are picked up from books and asking lots of questions from other experienced milliners AND lots of practice.

I hope to save enough by end of this year to take a trip to Ireland for some sightseeing and to learn from Lina Stein whose hats I adore. There are so many things to learn and picking new skills is important.

On my own, I will practise making bigger hats like these since I have acquired several new/used hat blocks:

The large brimmed hat block is my latest 'want'. I have just ordered it from a hat block maker since I can't seem to find any used one for sale.  I also ordered a larger saucer hat block which I know I shouldn' since I already have 3. The other 3 are all about 300 - 320 mm diameter and I want a large one. I like saucer hat and I started making them before the Royal Wedding. At that time, Guy Morse Brown only had 2 types of Saucer hat block but now they have quite a selection after several prominent members of the British Ryal family were seen in them.

Stay tune till I complete my hats.