|Project by Mark A. DeCou||posted 09-07-2012 09:47 PM||3300 views||0 times favorited||6 comments|
Project: re-crafted Maillard Formillon, a hat maker’s tool
Materials: Brass, Steel, Wood, Cork, Tin Solder, Glue, Wax
I included a photo of a past Conformateur restoration project, so that you could see how the two tools work together as a set to measure a person’s head, and translate that to a hat shape.
I will have to post more about this another night when I have more time. This is a Formillon, made by, or for, the Maillard company of Paris, France, in the 1850-1900 time frame. I received this antique hat maker’s tool, and replaced all of the wooden parts. As I sit and look at the photos of this, it’s just amazing to me how long such an activity takes to accomplish. But, it’s finished, and I’m glad it’s finished. I’ve done several of these Formillon restorations over the years, most of them just need a handful or a dozen fingers, but once in awhile I need to build all new fingers for one of them. They have to be highly specific in size, since they are used with a Conformateur to accurately measure a person’s head, and then are used to translate that measurement into a shape for making the hat. A tiny little difference in size, and the hat is made wrong. If you have never worn a hat that actually has been conformed to your head by a custom hat maker, you are missing something, and you wouldn’t really understand why the rest of us like it so much.
If you are looking for a custom hat maker, let me know and I’ll recommend some names for you.
If you are an owner of any Maillard hat making equipment that you’d like me to restore, please contact me and we can discuss the situation.
I’ll write more when I get time, gotta hit the State Fair.
thanks for reading along,
-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan - www.decoustudio.com