I have just blocked my first leather button style piece. I blocked buckram and while still wet draped and blocked leather over the top. It has turned out perfect, but I have never been shown how to use leather, I was working from trial and error.
Could you tell me how you stiffen leather pieces for use for flowers or freeform shapes. I tried some fabric stiffener but the leather still is not really holding it's shape.......Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you kindly Rebecca
I too have the exact same question. Would highly appreciate it if someone can share the tricks to stiffen leather.
Another milliner, Jo Peterson, shared this little bit of wisdom with a few of us that might answer your question:
" I used hat tech between the two layers of red leather on the bow. It is a thermoplastic material similar to wonderflex that softens when heated with an iron. As a result it sticks the two pieces of fabric together and it can be moulded and shaped accordingly. Once it has cooled it will retain its shape."
She had created a beautiful leather hat with a bow that stood straight up but with a bit of a curve.
Thank you Sharon That's a great start for me.
It's funny actually Adalia, as I have found most milliners don't won't to help by giving advice. As if it's some secret information that only they know. Or they want to charge you to pass it on.....I went to Tafe a few years back and completed cert 2 Millinery. While I studied I remember on many occasions showing the other students all the ways I did things as I had been making hats for a few years before (self taught) It felt awesome to help others find new ways/alternate ways to do things. Yet since completing that I have been unable to further my millinery study due to my location (regional NSW) and having 3 young kids under 6. I have asked questions on other sites in the past and get very few replies. So I continue to stumble my way through learning more skills.
It's so kind when people do offer advice and information, bottom line is we are not trying to steal anyone's thunder just trying to learn & enjoy a passion we all have in common.
Hopefully we can help with this.
When making flowers or stiffening leather we suggest using a hat stiffener such as our solvent based stiffener or the less toxic option, our water based stiffener.
Both of these options can be brushed onto the back of the leather (to keep the top side supple) and then either manipulated into various shapes with hands or with flower making tools. Be careful not to burn the leather.
Another method is to soak the leather petals in the water based stiffener or a diluted PVA solution and then padded dry to remove the excess and then molded into shape.
To read more about our solvent based stiffeners click below:
For our water based stiffeners click here:
We believe that when you help others and share information you always learn something in return.
Hopefully this is of some benefit to someone, we are always happy to help out best we can or answer and questions about products.
The team at House of Adorn.
Thank you so Very much Sharon Panozzo and House of Adorn. Your detailed information will be very useful to all of us trying to learn new tricks in the art of millinery. I am looking forward to try this out very soon. :)
Rebecca I understand what you mean and possibly, like how you have started off, I too have only so far been self thought by trial and error...and i have so far only done a few pieces for myself and my friends and friends of friends but I am very looking forward to begin my millinery online learning course hopefully soon when my crazy busy full time job allows me some time off for my millinery passion... in the mean time I highly appreciate it when experienced artists offer advise and information, as you have done.....so thank you once again. :)
Thank you kindly everyone who has responded. I shall post a picture of my finished piece soon. Have a wonderful hatty day.