Coloring and Covering Hat FramesCovering Hat Frames: Solid braids, and such as look sufficiently substantial when the upper and under brims are finished, need no extra covering over the frames; but if braids are at all transparent, the frame must match the braid. Now, as this is more often than not impossible to obtain, a quick and efficient plan is to tint the white frame the color of the braid. Every house has a paint box of some sort; mix the color wanted and lay on with a little brush, going over twice if once does not tint deeply enough. Red, or blue, can be done with inks of these colors, black also, or with shoe varnish. But there are pretty lacey braids that need an under covering over the frame; both must match; this under covering may be tulle, net, or a cheap silk mull, costing from fifteen to twenty-five cents the yard. Fold the material double, lay the frame on flat, pin around the edge, also around the head, and cut out, allowing one half inch turning around the edge and one inch inside the head size, which is to be snipped to the wire line. Remove the under layer of the mull, pin the other on the frame again, turning the edge up over the wire, and secure by running along under the wire. Slip the other piece over the crown, front to front (which should have been marked with cross pins), pin in place, turn the edge under over the wire, and run down. Bun the two head margins together beyond the wire.
The crown is covered with a round piece, plaited down neatly and sewn to the head margin of the brim. The braid is then sewn on precisely as before directed, or run by the straight edge only on the mull.
If tulle is used for covering-and this or silk veiling net is best for fine horsehair or very open lace braids-it must be used double on each side of the brim, and four times on the crown.
A bind of velvet or silk is very pretty around the edge of brim and crown in place of the braid bind, or between the two edge rows of braid, even if the hat is not to be trimmed with velvet.
Many pretty things can be done with and made of braids-rings, shells, curlycues, full gathered and tucked effects-but all these are so dependent on the taste and ingenuity of the maker that it is impossible to give rules or descriptions; but anyone who will sew a few hats by the foregoing instructions will, by noticing and examining prevailing styles, see the various ideas employed and readily be able to copy them. When any fancy design is to be carried out, it will be necessary to cover the frame, and it will be best to practice on old braid first.