Hello! I have emerged from under a pile of fabric and yarn and I’m excited to share what I have been up to this past month.
For starters, I have finally added a web shop onto this site. Well, technically, I have had my Etsy shop linked here all along, but this one is a bit different. It is my Slow Hat Shop . It’s questionable whether I should be promoting the fact that I work at a snail’s pace, but after years and years of fighting my desire to do everything slowly I have finally given in. Slow has won the race.
I’ll try to explain. Since I began The Hat Junkie 25 years ago, I have been trying to make beautiful hats that are accessible and affordable to many women. (Don’t worry, I have not completely abandoned that goal.) No matter what hat I was making there was always a timer in my head keeping track of how long the process took. I confess, I have often wanted to throw that internal timer off of a cliff. I just love making hats. Making a living has always been secondary to me. I’m not proud of that brain deficiency. My teenage son who eats a full size container of yogourt a day serves as a reminder that this having an income thing is no laughing matter. All I’m saying is that money has never been my motivator. I am motivated by beauty.
So, to make this long story even longer, I am constantly putting the hats that I most love to make on the back burner because they take so long to make and the price that might seem like a lot of money is actually not enough.
But lately, I have been rethinking…everything. I’m finding it harder and harder to separate what happens in my little studio from what happens on this planet. I’ll try to keep my insufferable preachiness to a minimum, but I have come to the conclusion that figuring out how to make hats faster, so that I can make more and make them cheaper is not the future I want. I want to make hats slower. I want to make hats from fibres that biodegrade, that are grown sustainably and most of all from fibres that already exist in the form of used textiles. I want to make hats where I can pay attention to all the beautiful, time consuming details. Yes, this means hats that are more expensive and I have way too many thoughts on that word, but I’m afraid if I go there you will click that little x in the corner of your screen.
So, I hope you will join me on my slow journey of setting up my Slow Hat Shop. If I have thoroughly confused you with having both a Slow Hat Shop and an Etsy shop, here’s the difference: The Slow hat shop will have my one of a kind creations and hats like my my hand woven hats which just take forever and a day, whereas Etsy will have the hats that I can reproduce, like my fleece hats and my Organic Jersey hats. Right now there’s an overlap, but I’m working on it.
My Goodness! Sometimes I just can’t stop talking.
Here’s another one of my latest creations. It’s made from upcycled denim jeans. I have been wanting to put a pocket on a hat ever since I listened to this Podcast about the history of pockets. Did you know that the French Revolution was the beginning of the end for women’s pockets? It began as a movement to downsize women’s dresses. Large dresses were considered excessive. This new style of less fabric meant no room for interior pockets on women’s clothing. From there the fate of pockets for women spiralled downwards. And in case you fear the current level of division in the world today has never been matched, take heart in the fact that two hundred years ago this issue of pockets was so controversial that people were grouped as pocketists and antipocketists. To this day, women’s clothing is often made with decorative pockets that are completely useless. It’s a wonderful bit of history.
Now, you may be asking yourselves if a pocket full of flowers is a useful thing, but I argue that there is nothing more useful than beauty. (I know…I’m just a bundle of contradictions.)
Speaking of beauty, I am so lucky to have customers like Kendyl who let me run wild with my creativity. Kendyl is a plein air painter and this is her winter painting hat. I lined the inside with fleece and pre painted the outside, so that any paint splatters would just add to the hat.
And don’t forget to check out my most favourite part of my website, Hatjunkies. There’s nothing that makes me happier than visits to my studio. I also love to meet people via the internet, but nothing beats face to face communication. Every hat has a head and every head has a story. I love to hear your stories.
And finally, in the spirit of slow, come join me on this beautiful walk from a couple of weeks ago. I truly live in one of the most beautiful places on earth. Thanks for spending some time with me. Anna