Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Tutorial: How to Reshape a Hat

        I have a vintage hat listed on EBay right now, and the other day someone sent me a message asking a question about its size.  When I got the hat out to check it, I saw that one side of the hat was kind of smashed down.  I didn't know if it got smashed in storage or if it was smashed before and I didn't notice it, but I needed to do something about it because I had it listed online as being in excellent condition.

        That's when my mom suggested I try steaming it.  I hadn't heard of that before, but apparently that's what she had seen them do at Drysdale's.  I was surprised with how well it worked.  The hat has held its new shape very well and sturdily.  Here's what we did:

        1. Boil some water in a tea kettle.

        2. Hold the part of the hat that you want to reshape over the steam for about 30 seconds or so.

        3. As soon as you remove the hat from the steam, push something up against it to hold it in the shape you want.  We used an upside down bowl to sort of pop out the dent.  The hat will be really hot from the steam, so you don't want to touch it with your bare hands.

        4. Hold the hat in its new shape for about a minute, then set it aside for about five minutes to let it dry.

        And that's it!  It's super easy and works really surprisingly well.  There might be some hats you wouldn't want to do this with.  Some fabrics probably shouldn't get wet.  You'll just have to use your judgement.  My hat was a combination of straw and plastic.  My mom was a little concerned that the heat would melt the plastic, but it did fine.  So that's it.  I don't know if any of you will ever find a time to use this information, but if you ever have a hat that needs unsmashed I hope this tutorial comes in handy!

- Danielle


Handmade in Israel said...

Interesting! I've used the steaming technique on a squished fabric lampshade before. I hope your hat sells.

Kimberly Danielle Furstenberg said...

It did! Thanks! I hadn't thought about using it for lamp shades, but I guess you could use it to unsmash lots of things probably.

ClouDesign said...

Wow such great idea! I've never thought it would be that easy!

Kimberly Danielle Furstenberg said...

Thanks! Yeah, I was surprised too. It really worked, and once it dried it was really sturdy.

Lactose Intoler-Art said...

That actually is really useful...I have a bowler hat I've had for awhile that's kind of bent...And I'm afraid some of my old etsy hats are a little warped. Cool post!