Perking up a veil or feathers

If your hat looks a bit sad or smells a bit musty when it’s unpacked from storage for your special day, then here’s an easy way to help perk it up using a bit of steam. Shown here are one of my bridal veils (with diamanté and hand rolled silk organdie roses) and a little red fascinator.

Before you begin, take care not to have any jewellery on (such as rings or bracelets) that may catch in the veil or feathers. Veil and feathers are quite fragile. They will withstand a bit of a tweak, but try to be as gentle as you can.

First, boil an electric kettle while you are unpacking your hat.

WARNING**This bit is hot and you must take care not to burn or scald yourself**

Then, once the kettle has boiled and itself switched off, but while the water is still steaming, open the kettle lid, for the steam to escape.

Taking care not to get your fingers, hands or arms in the flow of steam, gently waft just the veil or feathers in the flow of steam.

WARNING**Try not to get the main part of the hat in the steam, as this might alter its shape**

Remove from the steam flow and gently shake the hat, upside down if possible.

Taking care to be very gentle you may need to guide or tweak the veil or feathers into a nice shape.

Repeat if necessary. Put your hat on a nice clean stand to dry and rest. A vase or jug is usually sturdy enough for this job.

Once it is completely dry, wherever possible store your hat in a box large enough that the feathers aren’t squashed with uncoloured tissue paper

Published by Sarah McAlister Hat Maker and Textile Artist

I make all my lovely hats, caps and textiles by hand.

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