I've spent some time this week experimenting with a new technique - freeform blocking, which involves draping the felt of a hat as you block it. This enables you to create folds within the felt and effectively sculpt the hat into any shape you like, as you work.
The End Result!
I really enjoyed getting back to basics; starting from scratch, without a clear idea of how the end product would turn out and this got me thinking about creativity in more general terms. In his book 'Think like an artist.....and lead a more creative, productive life', the art critc Will Gopertz argues that creativity is "the ultimate affirmation of our humanness" and that "It is by being creative that we are likely to find contentment in our digitized age". I agree!
The joy and sense of satisfaction that comes from creating with your own hands is infectious and it's been a pleasure for me to see others experience this as they've created their own hats on my recent 'make your own winter hat' course. As well as leaving the studio with fabulous hats, my millinery students obviously really enjoyed the process of designing and then creating something unique, themselves.
The world is awash with creative opportunites, particularly at this time of year, with everything from Christmas wreath making to cookery and baking courses on offer. So I would encourage you all to express your creativity (and yes you all have it within you) in whatever shape or form you wish, it's part of what makes us human and the joy and satisfaction you'll get from it is addictive!
If you're a keen crafter, check out the website www.craftcourses.com for all kinds of craft courses.
If you'd like more details of my hat-making courses, please get in touch on 07815 704961 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.