by Cheri of From Out of the Cracks
“If you don’t jump, you won’t fall on your face; but you won’t get anywhere either!” Anonymous
Where does that creativity come from? What was the inspiration, the spark? Do you go somewhere to get inspired? Here is our featured HandmadeMN artist, Jane Carlson of Glorious Hats insight into making handmade
Jane says that inspiration sometimes comes before a piece is created and sometimes as it is being created. “Just getting ones head and hands into the process, following where the fabric and pattern lead, sends me off in different directions,” she says. “Each path chosen leads to another idea with the end result being a surprise. Sometimes the surprise is pleasing, sometimes it’s a disaster and that is what makes creating scary, fun, exciting and frustrating all at once.”
“Louise” began with a simple desire to make a large size flapper style hat and to use this fabulous teal wool that had been sitting in Jane’s fabric collection. “I had been thinking of making a flapper style helmet cloche to fit an average to large size head.” she says. “I previously made one similar to this from a 1920s pattern which looked great on displays, but the size was too small for most head.”
Jane then looked closely at the basic crown shapes of the original and draped a pattern on a size 22 head block. She added the bias band trim (the original pattern called for wool felt and had raw edges) and she also wanted the inside to be pretty, so she fussy cut the lining out of a rayon print, keeping a flower in the center of each piece.
After the crown and lining were basted together, Jane added the bias band. “I cut a long bias strip and pinned it around the rim, cut off the excess and when I tossed it aside it folded over and looked like a wing to me,” she says, “so I played with it and thought about it and then ran over to the buttons, belt and buckles storage unit, rummaged around and came up with a fabulous vintage belt buckle and viola - Wing! Louise actually purred when the wing was placed on her side,” Jane said.