quarta-feira, 6 de julho de 2016

Late sixteenth century paper mache hat I

Hi everyone!

If you watched my latest video/post you heard me talking about the idea of making paper mache sort of epoch props to use on video presentations of my historical doll collection (myroyaldolls.wix.com/myroyaldolls).

Even before finishing the elizabethan paper mache ruff, I've started to study and doing a late 16th century top hat.

We commonly see these sort of hats on the portraits of King Philip II of Spain. I also found out that they were fashionable not only in Spain but also in England and France as its also common to see King Henri III wearing them.

 Hats like these, the forefathers of the mid 19th century top hats, were fashionable until mid 1600s until being deposed by the so called "cavalier" hat (and then the tricorn, etc etc etc) 

So let me show how I've been doing until now.

I've cut a strip of cardboard and stapled it according my head's measurements. Having that defined I've then placed the sort of "crown" cardboard thing on a big cardboard board, drew the head hole, drew the brim and glued both with paper mache.

For the top bit I wanted a sort of conical shape, not straight straight up so... I imagined that if I'd cut a smaller circle and attach strips of cereal box cardboard upwards it would do.

Then started to glue strips of newspaper all around those to make the upper body ...
and the result was this:
Quite disgusting right?! Thats what I thought too! 

After counting until 5 and some deep breaths, thought "okay, they also had sort of puffed hats, one sees lots amongst Elizabethan portraits of nobles, right?"

Whilst trying to convince myself, I ended up buy destroying that shitty thing! It wasnt really what I wanted so I sat, maybe had some tea and tried again! (having the energy to destroy something that really doesnt resonate with what one expects is a great feeling, dont you agree?)

What I ended by doing wasnt much different from before, basically I drew a sort of "wall" out of strips of cereal cardboard and glued them to the upper disk (which was saved from going to the garbage from the previous atempt). And ended up with this:

So glued from the top downwards (instead of upwards) I then glued the above seen onto the other part of the hat and left it to dry overnight.

Much more pleased with the result, the next day I started to glue some strips of newspaper not only to secure it but also to strenghten the whole thing, ending with the hat looking like this:
As one can see, the cereal cardboard inner structure is still very noticeable so I thought either to re-model it in toilet paper or paper clay. By one hand toilet paper dries alot faster but needs lots of it, by the other hand paper clay does fills lots at once but takes ages to dry!

What to choose?

Still had some paper clay from having sketched a horse and its been ages that I didnt used it, plus thought it would be a good excuse, whilst the paste would dry on the hat, that I could dive either carrying on with older projects (like the royal coat of arms!!!) or start a new one ...

So I chose the clay, went up making more and covered the hat!
Ending up with this (3 to 4 days after)
To finish today's post I'll tell you that since last night and today's morning, because even after applying the paper clay, the hat had lots of lumps, lacks and misshapes, I have been re-shaping all with toilet paper and wood glue (my normal paper mache technique) :)

Hope you liked, please share your thoughts and do follow me/the blog as 'll keep posting whatever goes on on my mind / hands / studio!

Thanks for visiting!


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