Hats With Attitude

            By Judith Lindenfelser, C.O.

They took their sewing scissors and cut off the bottom half of their long dresses. Then they cut off their long hair and pulled their bob-hats down to their eye brows.  They called themselves "Flappers".  It was the Roaring Twenties.
Clara Bow
Clara Bow was the "IT GIRL". 
She was silent.   She did not need words - she had IT.  She was in black & white.  She did not need color - she had IT.  She never had an acting lesson.  She did not need to act - she had IT.

Clara Bow is a bob-hat.

The bottom of the brim comes just below the ear.  It is a warm hat for women who are active in cold weather.  The hat has one main color.  Several blended/contrasting colors are knitted near the bottom of the brim. A row of glass beads is knitted into the hat before it is felted.



The cost of the Clara Bow is $55.00

Note to knitters: The Ayn Rand hats are knitted intarsia style and, therefore cannot be knitted in the round.  I have as many as 30 bobbins hanging for a complex argyle style hat.
Note to knitters:  Don't you just love foo foo yarn?  Some of my favorites are silk blends with beads or sequins.  Or how about varigated yarns with globs of textures?  When traveling do you make a point of visiting local yarn shops?  While visiting Ouray CO I got to meet the four local yaks resposible for some amazing, hand-dyed homespun.  Would you believe there is only one yarn shop in Yakima WA?  True.  Nonetheless, I picked up some hand-dyed yarn with a drizzel of silver added for flash.  And don't get me started on feathers.  Did you know the word "penache" originally described someone who wore a feather in her hat?

Note to knitters:  The Lillinan Gish hat is knitted intarsia style.  Rounds of crocheted loops are worked into the piece before felting.  Then the foo foo yarn is added to these loops after felting. 

 If it is raining or very cold, the brim of the Eleanor hat can be pulled down for added warmth.

Note to Knitters:  After the Hat Lady dreams up a hat style, she usually knits it using the pattern templates she has invented and keeps stored in her brain.  The bulky, wool yarn is knitted loosly with size 11 needles.  Hats are made 30 - 40% larger than their intended size, to allow for the shrinkage that occurs during felting.

The hats are felted in a top loader washer, set on "small load", using very hot water.  By leaving the washer lid raised, and reseting the wash cycle The Hat Lady can control the felting process.  After felting, they are dipped into a drink of ice-cold Chugiak water.
After felting the hats are placed on forms to dry.  The Hat Lady's forms include anything from an upsidedown gold fish bow to antique hat forms.
Hats take from a few days to a week to dry.  But its worth waiting for because the long fiber sheep's wool holds the shape of  the crown for years.
Last, but not least comes labeling and embellishing.  Thanks to Cindy Stark of Cindy's Sewing and Embroidery for creating The Hat Lady's  stunning labels (www.sewing-and-embroidery.com).  "Bones" is the logo - short for "Knitting the Bones".  The Hat Lady's phone number is also included in case of hat emergencies.  Embellishing includes buttons, feathers, beads, foo foo yarn - every thing but the kitchen sink.


Head size matters!

Mostly, women's head sizes run about 22 - 23 inches around.  But then, there are  some of us who are outliers.  For example, "pin-heads" (and, yes, this includes The Hat Lady) have heads that run about 21 inches around.  And then there are pumpkin-heads, (you know who you are) who possess 24 inch heads.

Ayn Rand
Individual, straight lines, each creating its own destiny - working together they form the symmetry of plaid, check and argyle.  The Ayn Rand hat is for the woman who chooses her own path and knows precisely which turn to take at each crossroad.
Ayn Rand is a bob-hat.  The bottom of the brim reaches just below the ears.  It is a warm hat for women who are active in cold weather.
The cost of Ayn Rand is $65.00
Ayn Rand in plaid.
Ayn Rand in argyle.
Ayn Rand in check.
Fay Wray
The ability to scream on cue, takes practice, and can make you rich.  The ability to stop screaming, takes courage, and can make you happy.
Fay Wray is a bob-hat.  The bottom of the brim reaches just below the ear.  It is a warm hat for women who are active in cold weather.
The hat is knitted out of one main color.  Foo foo yarn is added around the bottom of the brim, then up into a peak on one side.  Inside the peak, with matching foo foo yarn is a crocheted flower.
The cost of the Fay Wray hat is $65.00

Lillian Gish

For the sake of art, she once laid on an ice floe until she became hypothermic.  Playing a vulnerable heroine in need of rescuing, she was, of course, hatless.  Had she been playing a woman who rescures herself, she'd have worn a hat.  
The Lillian Gish is a bob-hat.  The bottom of the brim ends just below the ears.  It is a warm hat for women who are active in cold weather. 
The body of the hat is knitted out of a main color.  The flower is knitted out of a contrasting color.  Foo Foo yarn is used to crochet both around the outside of the flower as well as inside the center of the flower.
The cost of the Lillian Gish is $65.00.
She did not always wear sensible shoes.  How much you wanna bet?  On that day in 1920, when she went to vote for the first time, she wore high heels and her hat cocked to the side.
The Eleanor is a rolled brim hat.  The bottom of the crown ends above the ears.  Embellishment options include edging the brim and crown in foo foo yarn, and adding a flower made out of the same yarn.  The base of the crown can be knitted in blending and contrasting yarns with a row of glass beads worked in before felting. 
The cost of the Eleanor hat is $80

Fanny is a cloche, a bell shaped hat, known for the flair of her bottom - full, fine and round.  And when she walks, she swings it like a ringing bell.

The body of the hat is a solid color.  Either blending or contrasting colors are used for embellishemt.  Because the bottom of the brim flairs away from the head, one's ears are not directly covered when wearing a cloche.

The cost of the Fanny hat is $75.00.


Talkeetna Char

This hat is for outliers - those who tend to hang out in the fringe.  Pull it down on your head, and be instantly transported out of the Mainsteam.  Instead, you find yourself at the Talkeetna Moose Dropping Festival with my friend Char.  Where no one knows you . . . yet.




The dreads can vary in length.  Dreads made with foo-foo yarn can be added in for added texture and glitz.  The end of the dread can be embellished with a bead, or a different  color. 
The cost of the Talkeenta Char hat is $90.00.








Lucy Ricardo

Whether she was in disguise, wearing perm rods, or dressed to the nines, she was lovely and never failed to entertain.  She made us laugh out loud - and for that we all loved Lucy.


Consider some of the special occasions hat customers have found to wear the Lucy Ricardo hat: pick your husband up at the airport, teachers conferences when bad news is expected, a gift for the retired hair-dresser, a gift for the woman who has spent a life time being careful not to go out of the house with her hair in curlers. 


The cost of the Lucy Ricardo hat is $75.00.


Dale Evans
When a woman puts on a Dale Evans cowboy hat, her legs automtically become three inches longer.  Before she goes out she grabs her badge - in case it's necessary to make an arrest.  She leaves her handcuffs behind.  They always come willingly.
The cost of the Dale Evans is $80.00.
The bottom of the crown of the Dale Evans ends above the ear; therefore its warmth does not inlcude the ears.  Embellishment options include beads or foo foo yarn along the edge of the brim.  It's fun to add a flower, feather or sheriff's badge.


Scarlett: Some women hear this name, and think - O'Hara; other women think - Johansson.  All red blooded women know that scarlet is the color of pheromones.  And we all top it off with a fedora when feeling dangerous.



Scarlett is a hat with a fedora crown.  The bottom of the brim rests above the ears, therefore its warmth does not include covering the ears.   The bottom of the crown can be embellished by knitting in a contrasting color or beads.  A man's tie can be sewn onto the bottom of the crown.  A feather tucked into the tie makes a nice finishing touch.
The Hat Lady favors a fedora.
The cost is $80.00, plus $5.00 for shipping.


Fatima's Dreads

Felted hair extensions can be knitted in "natural" colors, e.g., brown, blond or black.  Dreads can also be knitted out of fantastic colors, including purple, red, green or any of the colors available.  Crocheted strands of foo foo yarn are included with the felted extensions to add texture, color and gleam.  Each bundle of extensions includes a crocheted flower worked out of the same yarn used in the extension.  The average length is 40", allowing strands to be doubled when worn.  Each bundle contains 20 felted strands and 10 crocheted, non-felted stands. 


The cost of Fatima's Dreads is $50.00.

Photo courtesy of Sherri Leu/Leu Photagraphy, www.flickr.com/countrycitygirl.