Wire Structures

Throughout the centuries

with Jane Smith

Monday 24th to Thursday 27th June (4 days), 10am-5pm each day


Plus £5 per day for lunch (optional) – all dietary requirements catered for


World-famous hatter Jane Smith will introduce you to the history of wire frames in headpieces, from Tudor headdresses worn by Anne of Cleaves, to 1920s hats.

She’ll show you how to construct a lightweight wire frame that can be used as a foundation upon which delicate or fine antique materials such as lace and organza can be applied. This is a useful skill that can aid in the construction of historic hats from many different periods.

You will work with the basic styles and shapes of the period, using straw and buckram which can be covered with fabrics of your choice. The hats will be completed with trimmings which could consist of lavish ribboning, re-constructed birds and beasts, or an array of flowers, fruit or feathers.

This class is suitable for professionals, makers for re-enactment, and those starting a career in the subject.

The class was scheduled to take place at Hat in the Cat in Perth but has now been moved to Newburgh.

About the tutor

Jane Smith started making hats for theatre and film in 1968. She makes uniform caps and hats, naval bicornes, top hats and many more styles, in felt, straw, buckram, plastic and fabric. Currently she works almost exclusively with principal actors in theatrical or film production, and she is always interested in the historical aspect of the shows and films she works on. Alongside this work, she also teaches theatrical millinery at many of the most prestigious London Colleges.

  • To see her pieces in action on stage and screen, take a look at her website.

Wire Structures 1

Wire Structures 2

Wire Structures 3