I'm busy developing a new range of hats and wondering whether what I'm doing is the work of a hatter or a milliner. I'd always thought that someone who made hats was a milliner, but apparently this term is really reserved for those making fancy hats for women. An alternative term seems to be "hat-maker".
Anyway, whatever the correct term, my hats are designed to be unisex.
What's special about my hats is that I make the felt crown from the wool from my flock. This particular crown is Hebridean wool. The brims are tweed. At the moment I'm sourcing Harris Tweed, but longer term I'm hoping to weave my own cloth from my own sheep. Currently I only have a large quantity of one shade of yarn, so exciting cloth isn't yet possible!
The hats are lined with 100% organic cotton poplin.
The sheep in the photograph is not the donor of the wool for the hat. He's Neil, and, apart from being adorable, he's a Bluefaced Leicester X Wensleydale.
Thank you to Gabriel Langley Photography for the photograph and my new brim blocks were made by Owen at Guy Morse Brown.
Check out my workshop pages for 2015 feltmaking workshops including a fabulous summer school with Mandy Pattullo and a special exploration of British wools. Other workshops include opportunities to make hats, slippers, lampshades, peg loomed rugs. Workshops are at my Weardale, North Pennines smallholding, or The Hearth at Horsley, Northumberland.
This weekend at The Hearth Arts Centre I'll have my studio open for the Open Studios and Winter Fair, 22nd and 23rd November. I'll have all sorts of woolly goodies to delight you and on the Sunday I'll be taking a couple of my sheep!
All the wonderful Hearth artists will have their studios open that weekend - too many to mention them all, but they include Mandy Pattullo, Jill Stewart and Kim Lewis. We also have wonderful guest exhibitors including Mark Rowney, Kate Jackson and Oakwood Soaperie.
Hope you can make it!
NEW ADDITIONAL date for felt slipper workshop, 13th December at the Hearth, Horsley, NE15 0NT. Check my feltmaking workshops pages for details.
Also, there's an additional Hat workshop date, which I forgot to add! It's the 28th November, also at the Hearth, Horsley. Again, check workshop pages for details!
Well here's the photo I promised. Just a few of the things awaiting my attention. All in need of finishing.
If only this was the tip of the iceberg. Unfortunately this constitutes barely a peck on the tip of the iceberg of things I need to do in the next 36 hours before I head off to set up my stand at Yarndale.
I'm working my socks off getting ready for Yarndale. I'll be taking lots of everything you could possibly imagine, so do come along! Apparently I'm at stand 11.
Currently I have an enormous pile of "unfinished" things awaiting my attention. I suppose I should post a photo of some of the things, but I seem only to have photos of sheep! I'll try tomorrow.
It's been a busy summer preparing for the Horsley Wool Fair and now that it's over there's no rest for the wicked - Yarndale is looming! The summer also saw us joined by new additions to the flock - Horsley, Eric, Minkie and another, as yet, unnamed pair - all very lovely! Horsley has become a mascot for the Hearth artists and has his own website!
Woolly-minded shepherdess treading softly through the world.