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Unread 01-18-2016, 07:20 PM   #1
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Very Big Hat Support

So I've hit a bit of a setback with my Cole cosplay- the leather brim of his hat. I can't make it non floppy. What I've done is gotten 2 large pieces of furniture pleather; cut them into shape with the intention of putting them wrong sides together to make the hat. Id then paint the edges to look pretty. See here:

Initially I tried to drown the things in fabric stiffener, total fail. Then, I tested on a small scrap piece some ultra firm tough interfacing i had laying around. no go. I totally didn't realize how much the dang pleather would weigh.

I'm running out of ideas. Right now the best I can come up with is wire, cardboard or a large poster board, only that also leaves me skeptical. wire im worried because it'll be visible when i glue everything together. cardboard for its flimsyness.
what i know i need is something thin. and sturdy that can be shaped at least a little. I considered using the worbla left over from making the helmet portion of the hat but that just sounds -terribly- wasteful for how expensive the stuff is.

Heres the look I'm trying to get to:

Please help cause gosh I'm out of ideas.
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Unread 01-18-2016, 10:48 PM   #2
Dictamnus Albus
Join Date: May 2011
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tbh, i almost kinda see a "spider web" support structure in that image
along with the lift straps you can see on front and back
(on the back is a V shape straping, you might need to alter image gama to see)

and even with that, that hat looks like the leather sags, rather that being stiff like a stetson or tengallon

the reason its harder to see support is cause CG physics, and the thickness
so the structure dont technically exist, but the magic floating causes a shape anyways

i dont know about wire (thin enough to hide will probably be too thin to not sag with it)
but id try to make a spider web support using flat plastic
but dont know about sourcing for that

also the hatband area and the ring would be rigid is this pic so that gives you
artistic lisence to create a hard structure to support and build this hat off of

also awhile back when the movie "book of life" came out there were some topics about making her hat
which is similarily huge so if you google for the charachters name then search for making her hat, there might be some results there as well

Last edited by Dictamnus Albus : 01-18-2016 at 10:52 PM.
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Unread 01-19-2016, 05:41 AM   #3
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There's this stuff called buckram that is used by hatters to make a lot of those larger hats-- look into that!
Googling more things about millinery might help you here.
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Unread 01-19-2016, 08:15 AM   #4
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I second buckram (but in all honesty it may not be any cheaper than the worbla).

And now you know why real cowboy hats are made from felt or straw instead of leather, weight of materials.
Personally, I'd find a crummy old cowboy hat, steam it to the shape i wanted, and paint it with fabric paint to get the leather look.
Nothing is impossible, but some things are very expensive.
My Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/penlowe I make non-fitted custom things to ship within the continental US. I only do fitted garments for those whom I can meet in person.
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Unread 01-22-2016, 02:03 PM   #5
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Found a solution, albeit an unusual one.
While wandering through lowes I came across a 99 cent linoleum tile; flexible but stiff and lightweight and have used that xD

thanks for the suggestions/help everyone!
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