In the middle of winter.
A cold winter.
So what does one do after making such a drastic move? One makes hats to wear, of course!
I went through my fleece stash (I'm desperately trying to sew down the stash just to make room to store everything, and if you have any fleece, you know how much space it takes) , and my hat pattern stash (that would be two patterns...I'm slacking there...), and spent my sewing time on New Year's Day making not one, but two warmers for my frosty ears & head.
In spite of the fact that I made two versions of the same hat, I'm afraid I can't give 2 thumbs up to the pattern, Simplicity 2494.
If you take a good look, you'll notice that nearly every single model looks like if they move wrong, the hat they're wearing will either fall over their eyes or blow off their head. Pattern Reviews at PR said the sizing either runs too large, or too small, depending on which review you read. I think it's just a poorly drafted pattern.
I used View E (the orange one in the corner), and cut a Medium - the 22" measurement they give is exactly the size of the head circumference I wanted the band to fit on. However, because of the questionable sizing, I decided to cut & baste a mock-up hat before slicing up my precious Malden Mills tech fleece.
Let's just get the pattern problems out of the way first:
- It calls for 7/8 of a yard of 60" fabric for this little old hat. Really? I used a square of fabric about 2' x 2'. A large scrap, in other words. Sheesh.
- Once I basted up my mock-up, my conclusion (for this view, anyway) was that the hat portion was way. too. large. And the band portion (which I noticed was the same length in all of the hats that called for band) was way. too. small. They didn't match up. Not even close! The allowance given for "turn of the cloth" was just poorly calculated.
- Not really a major problem; more of a humorous eye-roller: The pattern goes into great detail explaining how to sew up the seams and top stitch half of the hat. Then it repeats these detailed instructions for the other half of the hat. Then it completely skips the step where you sew the two halves together. They just want to make sure you're on your toes, I guess.
- The last issue is what I mentioned above - the hats as drafted just aren't going to stay in place on a head. Which, I'm pretty sure, is what a hat is supposed to do. Right?
Oh. Another little moment of brilliance on my part.....I merrily started tracing the pattern, because that's what I do. After I got my pieces traced and cut, it dawned on me that every. single. piece. in the pattern is drawn separately from every. other. piece. In other words, one pattern piece for the S size, one for the M, one for the L. Absolutely no need to do any tracing! The good news is that there are only 2 pattern pieces for this hat, so my time and paper wasted was minimal.
Was this pattern not meant to be? Hah! Give me a challenge...I will carry on and make it work! (homage to Tim Gunn, whom I adore)
Now we can move onward to the hats:
|I hate close-ups. |
Getting over that, but still......
|I won't get lost in the crowd wearing this hat!|
The pattern for this hat actually calls for a binding, not a band, but I wanted the grey fleece to show at the lower edge, so I added a band instead. I rolled the band outward at the front of the hat, so that it's wider at the front than at the back. This was both for a better fit, and I liked the look better. Oh, and I cut the band about 1" longer than called for, and also took a smaller seam. Then I eased the body of the hat into the band, because the body was still way larger than the band.
The mock-up hat. Which will probably get more wear than the other one! Neutral colors, you know....
|I added a zipper flower - |
I've done a separate tutorial here on how I made it.
|This shows the yummy texture of the faux fur :)|
For this hat, I sewed the pieces right sides together (instead of the wrong sides together that the pattern calls for) and then top-stitched them. I still had the hat-too-big-for-the-band issue, so for this one I simply took a little 1/8" pleat near each seam line (there are 6 triangularish pieces that get sewn together to make the hat). I also made the band longer, as in the orange hat. This allowed the hat and the band to actually match up. :)
I may be on a hat-making binge here. I'm probably done with this pattern, but I just purged about 20 patterns from stash, so I think I can justify another pattern or two :)
Do you have any favorite hat patterns to recommend? Are you a hat wearer, or do you let your head brave the elements? Or do you have one of those luscious, thick, curly heads of hair that keeps you nice and warm (and brings out the jealousy in those of us with skinny hair)?