Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Hat Insanity!

So with my rubbish lungs I can't always do the kind of work I want to do. Believe it or not sewing can actually be quite physical and tiring! If you are doing a whole show, then cutting out an entire cast of togas for example can be really awful, manipulating 50 odd metres of fabric is a big task....well it is for me! As a way of increasing my productivity (and because it's fun) I have been trying out making hats-much smaller scale, much less fabric, much less tiring-marvellous. My first few attempts at paper mock ups were somewhat laughable, my mini top hat turned out more Ab Lincoln Stovepipe than the cute mini Victorian Riding hat I had in mind... So I clearly needed some way of determining the various lengths and measurements I was using that was not simply pulling them out of my head-which did not work. Now my maths is a bit rubbish, but one of the things I can remember is the Fibonacci sequence and the Golden Ratio. Now both of these have been explained far more clearly than I possibly can, so a quick summary culled from Wikipedia -
Two quantities are in the golden ratio if the ratio of the sum of the quantities to the larger one equals the ratio of the larger one to the smaller. The golden ratio is an irrational mathematical constant, approximately 1.6180339887
In mathematics, the Fibonacci numbers are the following sequence of numbers: 0, 1, 1,2,3,5,8,13,21 etc. By definition, the first two Fibonacci numbers are 0 and 1, and each remaining number is the sum of the previous two.
If you want more detail then look it up! So I knew that both these prinicples have been applied to art and even occasionally to music, with varying success- so why not hats?! Basically all I did was to either use the fibonacci sequence itself or create a sequence of numbers using the constant of 1.618 and then use these numbers on the hats. So, for example in this green hat the realtionship between the height of the crown, the diameter of the crown at the top and bottom, the width of the brim and the diameter of the brim are all related by the golden ratio and I think it looks pretty good! The black leather topper was created in the same way. Certainly better than the first ones I made with no relationship between the different hats parts.

Posted by Picasa

No comments: