Eleven years ago I attended my first Renaissance festival…but researched before going which led to creating garb and the necessary hats, for one cannot attend faire without proper head coverings! I created my first hat for that very first festival and the need to create the best took fire. The fruits of my “fire” are still a passion, and always bring a thrill to my soul when someone finds that One Hat that gives them cheer.
Tricorns, Lafayettes, Graces, French and Tudor hoods, and atifets are all hand sewn. Starting with heavy buckram, the wiring of crowns and brims takes double knot buttonhole stitches, with the wire being sewn to the edge of the buckram. This means that every hat crown has four re-threadings of the needle and the brims at least six times. It can take a half hour for each piece, if not more. And that wire isn’t going anywhere except at the base of the crown when the crown of a tricorn, Lafayette or Grace is stretched for the customer. Each crown has overlapping wires to allow for stretching. Every crown I make starts at around 22 1/4″, but with the construction, can be stretched to at the most 23″ or more.
French and Tudor hoods are constructed in a manner so that the wearer has no need of bobby pins or combs to secure the hood. In the style of the wealthier of the era, each hood and atifet is adorned with complementary-coloured lace veiling. Atifets have comb/bobby pin loops inside the crown for making the piece sit better on one’s head. Adorning beading is often Swarovski crystals, cubic zirconia gems, fresh water pearls, acrylic faceted beads, and gold or silver metal beads.
You can find us:
Facebook at Accents Renaissance and Historical Design
Instagram at Ren Kait