Posted by: bschutzgruber | August 8, 2017

Hats for the Cancer Center – A follow up

After my July 27, 2017 post Weaving at the University of Michigan Medical Center I have been asked to share more information about the hats we make.

Each weaver takes a turn designing and winding out the warps made up of different width stripes in a variety of colors. We use 5/2 cotton – 15 epi – 24″ wide. We’ll use that same 5/2 cotton, or sometimes rayon, for the weft. We do not use wool because even on good day many people cannot wear it next to their skin – let alone if they are dealing with side effects of chemotherapy.  The weave structure and/or weft colors are change every 24″ which allows us to get a variety of color combinations from each 7 yard warp. The yardage is then washed and dried prior to sewing.

Guild member, Bettie Behen, has been sewing our hats from the beginning. The pattern she uses is a simple circle crown/top with a band. To get as many hats as she can out of our yardage she combines the handwoven fabric with commercial fabric – polar fleece for winter, or lighter weight cotton or polyester for summer.

The diameter of the circle ranges from 12″-17″ and she cuts the bands in a variety of lengths to accommodate different head sizes. The hats have finished seams and the handwoven fabric is lined to keep any abrasiveness to a minimum.

She also makes few hats by folding and stitching a larger section handwoven fabric.

Bettie always does a fabulous job finding just the right accent combinations, which is no small feat because she never knows what colors she’ll be working with until we hand her the bolt!




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