Sally Gulbrandsen Feltmaker: Her tutorials and techniques are as individual as she is—unique, experimental and always interesting.
A Double Brimmed Wet-Felted Top Hat
Vintage Moët & Chandon Top Hat Ice Bucket
A vintage Moët and Chandon top hat ice bucket provided the inspiration for this wet-felting tutorial. The ice bucket was purchased from a local car boot sale for £10, but yours could be bought from e-Bay for as little as £20. This is a far cheaper alternative to vintage millinery hat blocks, which can command high prices, often in the region of £150. Top hats blocks are rare and even more expensive.
Hat blocks come in various shapes and sizes but it is not often that one finds an ice bucket with a gorgeous shape that can be utilized in hat-making!
The double hat band, though not planned, simply evolved during the felt-making process. The end result surpassed all expectations.
Moët and Chandon Top Hat Ice Bucket
What You'll Need
- Vintage top hat-shaped Moët and Chandon ice bucket.
- Nuno felted hat band
- Inner hatband made from an offcut of felt left over from a previous project
- 250 grams Merino wool roving: In colors of your own choice
- Pencil roving or silk embellishment for embellishment if desired.
- A heavy-duty bamboo blind
- An old towel
- Warm, soapy water
- Bubble wrap
- A length of elastic or a heavy-duty elastic band
- A sheet of foam underfloor layment on which the template can be drawn. Underfloor layment is the perfect choice for this template because it can be re-used many times over.
- Scissors: Make sure you have a sharp pair!
- Felt-tip pen: This is for drawing the template. Use a damp cloth to remove any traces of ink left behind from the felt tip pen so that it does not bleed into the wool.
1. Draw the Template
- Draw and cut out the Template as shown below onto a sheet of underfloor Layment using a felt-tip pen.
- Use a damp cloth to remove any felt-tip markings on the template so that these do not bleed into the wool.
2. Prepare the Working Surface
- Place an old towel down onto a waterproof surface.
- Put a large heavy duty bamboo blind down onto the towel.
- Put the prepared template down onto the heavy duty bamboo blind
3. Side 1 of Layer 1
- Put down an even layer of Merino Wool fibers as shown on the template below.
4. Wet With Warm Soapy Water
- Sprinkle the project using warm soapy water in a squeeze bottle.