Hot! The “Looks Strangely Familiar” Hat (plus bonus Queeny frivolity)

The Facts

Fabric: Navy broadcloth from stash, leftover fabric from my Family challenge maxi dress.
Patterns: Vogue 7600 view A.
Year: Contemporary.
Notions: Fusible interfacing, thread.
Time to complete: 4 hours (I had trouble getting my head size right).
First worn: 14th June 2012
Wear again? Probably on holiday, but I want to have another go at getting sizing right for ‘best’.

Total Cost: $0 (£0)


The challenge: “On Holiday: Vacation wear”.


So, you might well be thinking, looking at these photos…..I’m sure I’ve seen that dress somewhere before.

Well, yes, you have…..but I made a new hat to go with it for my vacation!

And I have to say, it took me totally by surprise, but this hat is the most difficult thing I’ve sewn all year.

Actually, that’s a slight lie. The sewing of it wasn’t difficult… was getting the sizing right. And no matter what, I couldn’t get the inner lining to sit flat. It was determined to go all rumpley inside.

I had a few false starts, including making the crown too big:

And if I’d had more time, I possibly would have perfected the Hat of Perpetual Frustration….I think next time I make it I need to decrease the size of the crown a bit and lessen the acuteness of the dart slopes, if that makes any sense to anyone but me.

But unfortunately, I’m not here again this week….I’m away on vacation (oh my dedication to Mena’s challenges, she picks ‘Vacation’ as a theme and I dutifully go on one ;)). I’ve written this post (and made the hat) before we set off and am hoping by the magic of technology to take pics in interesting places to slot in and still get it submitted by the challenge deadline.

I did toy with the idea of putting a ribbon band around the bottom of the crown, sitting on the brim to take in (and cover up) some of the excess hat flabbiness….

But nah. All I had suitable in my stash was some very shiny bright royal blue ribbon….it didn’t look right. Perhaps when I get home, I might try making a similar width bias tape out of the navy broadcloth and seeing what that looks like. But until then, you’ll just have to look on at my crown of unusual flabbitude….at least it will keep my scalp from sunburn and my hair colour from (extra) fading whilst away.

But anyway, if the posting of pics we’ve taken whilst on hols (translation for Americans: on vacation) go according to plan, yes, this is Hollywood……and if my stalkerish plans work out, here are some friends I bumped into*:

And though I love my hat, I would rather pinch Indiana Jones’s….

*I didn’t really meet them, we went to the Hollywood Wax Museum (the kids had a superb time posing with the stars, the grown-ups had a superb time laughing at the lack of likenesses of some of the exhibits).

Next week – Summer 2012 trends…..the project I half made at home before coming away on vacation (the bottom half to be precise) and half to be done whilst on the road trip (check out my Absobloominglutely tumblr for proof of in-car sewing and interesting places we visit along the way including Death Valley & near Area 51).

P.S. Remember how I made my Diamond Jubilee challenge outfit but didn’t feel up to taking photos of me in it? OK, well this one’s especially for Gina who said she missed my smiling face in it….and all the rest of you who enjoy me being silly. We stayed on the Queen Mary at Long Beach in week one of our vacation (see I’m using this being the ‘Vacation’ week to sneak in some ‘vacation’ pics, sneaky eh?). We managed to be onboard the night of the gala dinner and opening of the ‘Diana: Legacy of a Princess’ exhibition (unfortunately we couldn’t afford tickets at $150 a shot) but me being dressed up as a Queen actually got a lot of positive plus amused comments from quite a few of the gala attendees ;)

Plus, because you HAVE to make the most of being on a gorgeous art deco ship as a location, the whole family got dressed up to match my Vegas week challenge for photos…..does this make up for only making a hat this week? Even if it was the hat of perpetual frustration? I’m not sure I’ve shown you the Tempest Devyne backup team, but meet Mr D and Goth Child (photographers and calming forces) and Melchett (stylist, jewellery ‘thief’ and general cheerleader), and although I didn’t make their outfits, each one has been altered of refashioned by me to their requests, so they’re all thankful to Sew Weekly for my improved sewing skills too :)




Tempest Devyne is a Brit who loves rain. She was therefore exiled to the deserts of Arizona. She started tentatively sewing about 3 years ago to make her own burlesque costumes. She'd now like to make pretty clothes for herself that don't rely on velcro and poppers to stay on. She's self-taught with help from the internet and lots of books from the library.


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  1. Oh Tempest, LMAO and glad your having such a fantastic and exciting vacation. You go girl, I have a hat pattern also but haven’t had the guts to try it. The only hats I made I crochet.

    • It was my cunning idea to have a smaller project to fit making in before we left for hols, I should have known fitting it wouldn’t be easy. Though it’s not perfect it’s been gorgeous to wear on the beach all week AND rolls up to fit in bags!

  2. Love your hat with your dress. cute.

  3. Great to see you with your family, a great bunch of folks, it appears. They are lucky to have such a creative and inspiring mom and wife. I’ve tried my hand at brimmed hats before, but they are so difficult that I never wanted to go there again. Your hat is awesome and so charming in the way iit matches your dress! Enjoy the rest of you vacation!

    • Thanks Barbara. They are fab. The hat was much harder work than I thought it would be but without a doubt it’s been the most worn and most useful item of clothing this vacation…..and without Sew Weekly I doubt I would have tried making one.

  4. Wait a minute. You were in So Cal and didn’t bother telling me!?! RUDE!!! J/K, a little. I would have totally met up with your fam and given you a tour myself. BTW, your hat is so rad. I can’t believe you made a hat! You are so talented. Millinery is beyond my comprehension.

    • I think I’m going to have to come over on my own sometime and meet up with all of you…..I think taking my family away from any of their surfing time to do anything Sew Weekly, even meeting a lovely lady would have gotten me shot ;) as a famous Californian says “I’ll be back”.

  5. I soooo love this fabric. I really wish I could lay my hands on this type of fabric. The hat looks great, the whole outfit looks great.
    The photos are totally fun – I think my favorite is the one where you’re standing in your bright dress next to Darth Vader – he must have got a color shock. But why does Indiana Jones look so weird? This must be one of the exhibits that you were laughing at for the lack of likeness.

    • The Indiana Jones was one of the worst, I bet Harrison Ford wouldn’t be impressed seeing how old and beardy it looks. The worst, which unfortunately we don’t have a pic of was Jude Law…who was stodd next to that Robert Downey Jr on the left of the photo.

      Thanks Djamila, I count myself so lucky on this material score, it was a fabulous find in a charity shop/thrift store.

  6. What a post! Something for everyone, and 4 SW makes if I am not mistaken. Love that hat and all you photos. Your family look adorable.

    • Thank you, yes they are :) Actually, if you count the hat and the dress as separate makes we think there are actually 5 SW makes in this post: 1. tie dye hat, 2. tie-dye dress, 3. UK/USA dress, 4. purple satin/lace Vegas dress, and 5. Diamond Jubilee outfit & crown.

  7. LOVE your hat, I see you were in my old stomping grounds : ) Thanks for taking us on your vacation with all the pics, what an adorable family!

  8. Awww! Hello team Devyne! *waves* Nice to see you all, hope you’re having a lovely holiday.

  9. Love it! Hats are more work than you think; I’ll have to make one for a challenge like you instead of hoping to sneak one in some week in addition to whatever garment I’m making. Love seeing the fun you’re having on the road with the fam.

    • I’m getting more and more inspired by Loran’s lovely hats (and detailed tutorials), I definitely think they are worth a whole week’s ‘perfecting’ on their own. Thank you :)

  10. Gorgeous family, Tempest!! And so well-dressed…I’d love to meet their tailor (wink-wink). Your holiday photos are the awesomest…you guys look like you enjoy each other’s company…something that can be hard to do on a road trip.

    Your matching tie-dye print hat is the perfect addition to your signature dress…I’ve dubbed it that because it suits you wonderfully…the colors, the screaming fun it oozes, and the curve skimming fit.

  11. I love it! Thanks for the picture shout out. I just got around to reading your post and the cool thing is that I put a special picture in this week’s post for you without knowing you had a special one for me! We’re like virtual sewing soul sisters or something! I like the orange shoes with the dress-very classy!

  12. What an awesome post Tempest, they always are, and your hat is fabulous, you look great and to see you wearing only handmade? well that just puts the icing on the cake. BRILLIANT!