Felt Hats by Miriam Carter of Dublin
Feel Warm and Look Fashionable
Miriam Carter of Dublin has taken a contemporary approach to a traditional craft. Her hand-made felt hats are “blocked” with antique hat molds she salvaged from a local hat-making company that, after a series of moves, was on its way to China. Shaping today from the past, her styles and colorful felted materials are alive with fresh design.
Carter has an almost unlimited number of options to shape hats, pairing separate wooden molds for brims and crowns. She creates fabric from Merino wool fibers with agitation, water and pressure. The fiber’s tiny hooks and scales lock together or “mat” to form a felt body. In the process, additions of yarn and silk are added for surface design and textural interest. Finally, the hat body is shaped over the molds: “I use Australian Merino wool because it is the finest available and makes a refined product.”
Finding the right hat for an individual face is an art too. Carter believes it’s akin to finding the right frame for a piece of art — people who think they don’t look good in a hat just haven’t found the right one. She says women who wear her hats can “keep warm while looking fabulous.” Maybe you’ll look good in her “Greta Garbo” or outrageous large “Mad Hatter.”
Carter will be showing hats and other garments in Peterborough at “Crafts at the Town House” on Nov. 29 and 30. Prices range from $95 to $200. She is a juried member of the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen and shows at the annual League show in Sunapee and juried craft shows across the country.