October 26, 2009

Mini hat block out of cork

Those who have been following me for a while might remember that I did a mini plasticine (aka Play-Doh) hat block to use it for making straw braid hats (like these ones).

I’ve been thinking for a while that this block would make a beautiful felt hat, but if I blocked felt on it, it would soon lose its shape, so today I set off to make a cork version of the block.

The result is quite close to the original, but one must keep in mind that the curves of the original block where due in great measure to the fact that plasticine is very malleable and lends itself to that kind of look. Reproducing that curviness with cork has been difficult. You can imagine how difficult it has been by looking at the pile of glued cork layers (4 centimeters each) that I started with. When I started I had my doubts it would work out, but I’m pleased that it did in the end, after hours of filing and sanding away.

Now there’s only one thing left to do, to block a felt on it!

You can see all pictures I’ve taken of the process if you follow this link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/63536356@N00/sets/72157622669749288/

All pictures related to making a cork block (you might remember I also made a Homburg hat cork block) can be seen if you follow this link:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/63536356@N00/sets/72157602793993432/

Will be back soon with pictures of a felt mini hat made using this block…


  1. You are AMAZING! I can hardly wait to see it blocked.

    #1 Fan

    Comment by Montez — October 26, 2009 @ 11:16 pm

  2. This is some serious piece of work!!! Love you.

    Comment by Joaco — October 27, 2009 @ 9:27 am

  3. you are an artist!!
    you dare making almost everything!! I’m looking forward to seeing the new results 🙂

    Comment by Nila Taranco — October 27, 2009 @ 10:48 am

  4. Cristina.- pues te ha quedado muy bien el “bloque”, así para repetir y repetir sombreros de esos tan maravillosos. Como estás?…..estamos desconectados….!!!!!, bueno ya te contaré, yo bien pero bastante desocupado. Un abrazo,


    Comment by paco peralta — October 27, 2009 @ 11:22 am

  5. […] want to know how the blocking of the Mini Hat is going, here is a sneak preview of the hat block in use. I have used a black furfelt cone with spikes, and as you can see there is a lot left over […]

    Pingback by The rantings of a MAD HATTER wannabe… » Sneak preview of cork block Mini Hat — October 27, 2009 @ 7:38 pm

  6. I LOVE the shape of your block. You got the curves just right. You are truly a sculptor as well as a milliner. Brava!!
    K Q:-)

    Comment by Kate — October 28, 2009 @ 9:07 pm

  7. Amazing work! I never thought that cork could be sturdy enough to block a felt hat on it. You do fantastic projects!
    Please keep on blogging.
    Best regards.

    Comment by Leah — October 31, 2009 @ 4:28 am

  8. wow, this is very good and I love the creativeness of making your own block I have some that I made from my bosses blocks before I left London so you have inspired me to share them Cristina I will put them on my blog soon so you can see, keep up the good work, JULIE

    Comment by julie fleming — February 21, 2010 @ 11:32 pm

  9. Gorgeous and very clever! Where does one find 4″ thick cork? I live in Canada. New to your site, so excited to check back!

    Comment by Vivi — May 4, 2010 @ 4:10 am

  10. Hi Viv,
    The cork is 4 centimeter thick, not inches!
    We have a specialist shop in Barcelona, no idea where it can be bought in Canada, but if you find out please share it with us!

    Comment by cristinadeprada — May 4, 2010 @ 9:05 am

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