In Millinery Class #7 we worked on fabric roses, and were supposed to work on ribbon flowers in class #8, but we ran out of time. Once a number of my hats were constructed, I kind of felt at a loss sometimes on how to embellish and decorate them, so I decided to do a little ‘research’ on ribbon work, to see if I couldn’t get inspired.
First off I found another blogger who loves ribbons; Kate O’Brien has a quick post with some great links. That being said, I can’t imagine ordering ribbons online – I need to touch-and-feel things that are new to me. (I could totally see myself ordering broadcloth or something though – something where I know what it will look and feel like, and where a slight colour discrepancy won’t really matter…)
She recommended the Artful Ribbon – now.. I’m not entirely eager to buy a book sight unseen either – especially about a subject like this, where it could be all fluff and pretty photos… OR could be really good useful instructions. So, my first stop was the Calgary Public Library… hahaa, yes, they actually have this book in stock, so I placed a reserve and took a look when it came in. My intention was that if it was super-useful I could purchase it, but unfortunately it wasn’t quite what I was looking for…
Kate O’Brien also mentioned being inspired by the ribbon on the House of Nines millinery designs. They have an Etsy store with gorgeous mini top hats, mini wellingtons, derby hats – all very Victorian-inspired but at the same time very modern. Beautiful! They also have a blog – click the link for the cockade-specific thread… and then go back and take a look at the blog in general!
Another Etsy seller of note for beautiful ribbon cockades (or Cocardes, which I guess is the French term) is Monsiuer Cocarde. I especially love the swirly ones (I hesitate to name or link, because by the time anyone reads this, they’ll no doubt be sold out…). The really nice part – he has some really clear, up-close photos so you can really get an idea of how much work goes into all of the pleating (not to mention the yards of ribbon required!)
Another (very) notable Etsy seller is Clytemnestra’s Closet – there are some amazing designs here – and it turns out I am pretty sure that the artisan is the author of the Artful Ribbon – because I found the same photos being used in a class she taught as are displayed on the Etsy page. Hmmm I wonder if the book will have some of the designs like the Nautilus? (My favorite, by far!) One thing though, she really takes advantage of different ombre-effect ribbons, striped ribbons, etc… and I find them very hard to find locally. I don’t have a trip planned to Vancouver any time soon to hit Dressew, but perhaps a visit to one of the specialty fabric stores in town is worth consideration. Perhaps after I pick up the book….
Finally, as far as inspiration, I found this instruction image on Pininterest, and followed it to the source – How Did You Make This? It’s a very neat visual instruction to make a lovely feathered brooch with a ribbon cockade accent – what fun! I’ve copied the image, but please click the link to get all of the instructions as well!
So now what?
So I’ve had the chance to look at a number of different books, but none of them are really giving me what I want! The topic seems to be a bit too obscure, because there aren’t a lot of Google hits on the search term either, and I’m not really close enough to Berkley, California, to go to a class held at Lacis. (Ok.. the class was in 2011, but presumably at some point there might be another..)
So – dear readers… do you have any suggestions? I want to make something more complicated than the photo above… but I just don’t know how, and can’t seem to find any instructions. Help!