This is Pillbox #4 of a group of four elaborately decorated pillboxes a client discovered on Ebay. The original hats were very small and rigid. She wanted them transformed into larger scale hats which would be more comfortable to wear. This is not to say the hats will be any less theatrical - less is never more!
Pillbox #4 was the shallowest and the heaviest of the 4 hats, heavily encrusted with old jewelry, large artificial pearls and large glass jewels. I decided my "Emma" brim block would be the most suitable for this theatrical splendor. The up-sweep of the brim shape would provide a large base of support for the hat on the client's head and visual height and proportion to balance the flat pillbox.
A pale yellow felt was blocked for the brim of the new hat and the pillbox crown set onto the brim and hand-stitched together to secure the two parts. Two rows of metallic gold and white braid trim are used to give more visual height to the crown and integrate the two parts of the hat together. Gold metal and rhinestone flower like jewelry pieces are added to the braid at the base of the crown to extend and blend the decorative elements of the pillbox to the brim of the hat.
A wrap of dusty rose pink silk is laced through holes punched along the brim edge to thicken the brim much like a thick frosting on a cake. The silk adds visual weight and pulls the color of the pink jewels out onto the brim of the hat.
A ruffle of silk bow loops fill in the back and sides of the crown against the up-sweep of the brim providing more color and texture. Lastly a frothy cluster of cream ostrich plumes provides height and movement to the completed hat.