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Thread: Reshaping a wool Fedora

  1. #1
    One of the Regulars dragonaxe's Avatar
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    Reshaping a wool Fedora

    Hi folks

    Are the techniques for reshaping the brim and crease on a wool/fur Fedora the same as a fur one? I've been researching steaming and bashing on the net, and they all show fur hats being converted.

    So, I'm wondering if I should use the same methods on my wool/fur crushable?

    cheers
    Last edited by dragonaxe; 10-19-2010 at 04:24 AM.
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    Incurably Addicted Edward's Avatar
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    I'm sure there's someone on here who has managed it, but my understanding is that wool is at best much, much harder to reshape than fur.
    If in doubt - overdress.

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    I'll Lock Up gtdean48's Avatar
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    I wouldn't use steam on a wool or wool blend hat, think of what hot water does to a wool sweater = you always wash those in cold water. To rework any crease in wool or wool blend, I'd just use a spray bottle in distilled water to get it wet enough to mold then let it dry very slowly, preferably on my head. Fur felts tolerate water where wool seems to breakdown with repeated wettings. You'd have to add some stiffener back to the wool body. With fur felts, steam reactivates the shellac, in my experience.
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    I'll Lock Up scottyrocks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gtdean48 View Post
    I wouldn't use steam on a wool or wool blend hat, think of what hot water does to a wool sweater = you always wash those in cold water. To rework any crease in wool or wool blend, I'd just use a spray bottle in distilled water to get it wet enough to mold then let it dry very slowly, preferably on my head. Fur felts tolerate water where wool seems to breakdown with repeated wettings. You'd have to add some stiffener back to the wool body. With fur felts, steam reactivates the shellac, in my experience.
    I guess it depends on the wool hat. Ive had a couple of wool fedoras where the hat holds its shape using the spray bottle.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dragonaxe View Post
    Hi folks

    Are the techniques for reshaping the brim and crease on a wool/fur Fedora the same as a fur one? I've been researching steaming and bashing on the net, and they all show fur hats being converted.

    So, I'm wondering if I should use the same methods on my wool/fur crushable?

    cheers
    Don't use steam on a wool hat unless you've got a 'hat jack'(lock & co website) and then it's inadvisable,they just shrink.I've found you can't do a lot with wool hats shapewise,you can do pretty much anything with felt and steam but that's the price difference.I did make a porkpie for a friend last week with a knackered wool felt, wide brimmed trilby I found in a charity shop.I cut down the brim and then soaked it in tepid water,reshaping the crown whilst wet,I also had to shrink it two sizes,but the hat cost 2.50 and if it hadn't worked it didn't matter,the fact that it turned out alright was as much luck as judgement and I could set my hat jack to his head size so it could shrink down to it and no further.Anyway,to summarise,I would be really wary with wool,it's easy to shrink unless it's the most expensive wool felt and it doesn't hold it's shape anywhere near as well as furfelt regardless.If you're not happy with your hat look on ebay,some fantastic vintage bargains out there,lock,dunn& co,christy's, all come up for a song,we all end up with collections,(I got a beautiful,unworn looking dunn for 9.99).By the way,what does and ong mean?Hope this has helped,cheers.

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    One of the Regulars dragonaxe's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice guys. I couldn't help but have a go anyway
    I steamed just the front and back brims (to lower them into more of an aussie outback style). I made sure to hold it for no more than 5secs at the very furthest from the steam (just before it disappears into the air) so it wasn't too hot, but still carrying lots of water vapour. It appears to have shaped very nicely, although I'm not convinced it won't move back to its original shape over the next few days, but it was worth a go (and seems to have worked).

    LOL = Laugh Out Loud
    No idea what ONG means, but OMG = Oh My God
    Last edited by dragonaxe; 10-20-2010 at 05:23 AM.
    "It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world. The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens." Baha'u'llah

  7. #7
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    I use steam to shape wool hats all the time. It isn't necessary to get the hat wet so it cools and dries very quickly without shrinkage. I always work on small sections at a time.

    I find that it is often necessary to work the brim sides a bit to keep the front and back dips from rising. I usually do that by holding the front and back in place and hitting each side with a shot of steam. You can feel the brim relax as you work. Several quick shots with time to cool in between works better for me than trying to steam the entire brim.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by dragonaxe View Post
    Thanks for the advice guys. I couldn't help but have a go anyway
    I steamed just the front and back brims (to lower them into more of an aussie outback style). I made sure to hold it for no more than 5secs at the very furthest from the steam (just before it disappears into the air) so it wasn't too hot, but still carrying lots of water vapour. It appears to have shaped very nicely, although I'm not convinced it won't move back to its original shape over the next few days, but it was worth a go (and seems to have worked).

    LOL = Laugh Out Loud
    No idea what ONG means, but OMG = Oh My God
    If it does go back try the dampening it and put it on the arm of a chair so the front and back can hang down whilst the sides are supported,and thanks for the definitions,thought something was odd,L.O.L always used to mean lots of love but it didn't seem right!

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