Needle-Felting, Mending and a Hat

My husband, also known as The Ever-Gorgeous Earl, is one of those people who look great in hats. I, on the other hand, do not. So I indulge my love of hats by finding ones he likes, which is more difficult than you might think because, well, OK: you know how men are supposed not to like to shop? Multiply that by about a million, and that’s how much my husband doesn’t like to shop. Oh, he’s fine going with me when *I* shop. He takes his iPad and plays Temple Run and is perfectly content. But to shop for clothes or shoes or anything for himself? He’d rather wear falling-apart rags from when he was in high school or college, lo! those many years ago, than go look for something new.


So when he does have something, he hangs onto it, no matter what sorry state it’s fallen into. Take this once-groovy wool hat, for example:

Freeman-Zachery wool hat 1

It’s difficult to see it, but the hat is covered with tiny little moth holes. When we discovered moths had gotten into the hats, I was going to toss them all and fill our entire house with those little cedar disks. But my husband, in truest Guy Fashion, claimed not to see anything wrong with the hat. What’re a few tiny holes, anyway? I rolled my eyes a *lot*, and then I realized: Hey! 100% wool! I have needle-felting stuff! Why not? So I got him to go out into the storage building and dig out the bin of felting wool and roving:

Freeman-Zachery wool hat 2

and I set about repairing his hat:

Freeman-Zachery wool hat 3

Me being me, I was compelled to find out if I could also stitch on the hat with embroidery floss (yes, but it’s a pain around the edges).

It was a pretty quick job. I’ll probably go back and do more, but I wanted to do just enough to see how it works and how it wears before I spent a lot of time messing around with it. I realized in the process that my felting mat has deteriorated in the years it’s been in storage, so if I were going to do more of these (and I probably will, at some point), I’d get a new mat, and one small enough to fit inside the hat (the one I have is quite large because I assumed I’d be using it only for flat wall pieces).

Freeman-Zachery wool hat 4


So there’s just one more way to embellish the things you wear (remember: we want to make it possible for us to find one another when we’re out in the world) and save the scraps you’ve got lying around from other projects AND—most important—keep as much as you can from going into the landfill. Using wool scraps to salvage a hat? It’s a no-brainer (and if you don’t needle-felt, it would be pretty easy just to sew on patches).


Sharing Stitches_160For more sewing projects, check out Sharing Stitches eBook by Chrissie Grace.






Ricë is the author of Living the Creative Life, Creative Time and Space, and Destination Creativity. She also blogs at The Voodoo Cafe.


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