Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The "Ruby Hunter" Series, Part 2.

 One of the most interesting hats I created for my 2013 "Sanctum"  Collection was a hat I named "The Thief: Ruby Hunter" - you can see it in more detail right HERE . Some hats just have a way of making it back into your life and this is exactly what happened with "The Thief; Ruby Hunter" Part 2 I am introducing to you today. Unlike the first version, this one had to be put together feather by feather. The fabric dyeing process included four steps and involved mixed layers of colors applied in several steps. The pallet of Pink, Red, Fuchsia and Bordeaux were mixed in different proportions to make sure that the spectacular tail created out of the feathers of the Bird Of Paradise (which, by the way came to me all scattered inside a 100 years old box in every shade of dirty cream and grey you can possibly imagine).
 The process of dyeing feathers  rich ruby color slightly fading towards the end of the Thief's tail took several test trials and one week on top of it to complete. And only than it became all about the story and the best possible techniques to implement in order to tell it. I probably never told you but many years ago, when I just came to the US I had to work several odd jobs. Nothing special, your standard immigrant story: waitressing, cleaning houses and taking care of senior citizens and even an ice-cream girl (my most coveted position at the time since I had an unlimited access to the best ice-cream in the world. :-) ). And so one of the elderly ladies I took care of for several months had a giant parrot called Binky. He was an amazing, beautiful creature, very proud, terribly cranky and extremely hard to please. :-) Binky was red, yellow, cobalt blue and turquoise. Despite having a bit of a temper Binky did have one soft spot.
 Well, three soft spots if you think of it: he loved apples, taking baths and above all his most favorite thing to do was to get into Mrs. K's jewelry box (which contained every single piece of jewelry Mrs. K collected, bought or had given to her as a gift over the span of her entire life) and play with long necklaces. After a while I noticed Binky was more drawn to one particular necklace: it was made out of ruby red German glass beads much like the beads you see on the hat in this post. He would actually dig this ruby necklace out and than try to place it over his head. Often he would refuse to give it back to me or Mrs. K and I can not tell you how often Binky went to sleep in his cage wearing it. And so here you have it - my memory of the beautiful thief who loved Mrs. K's ruby necklace. :-)
 Well, with all the beads and gold bird's feet, not to mention the structure and the bird itself ended up weighing almost 2.5 lb. Every visitor in my Atelier is immediately drawn to "The Thief: Ruby Hunter" series. Since the hat was formally released into Collection, it starred in several editorials including two features in WWD, Vanity Fair Italia and even CNN news.  This is one of the hats (an I have few of them) I will never sell or recreate again. One of a kind. I want to keep them close to my heart just like the memories they embody. :-)


Hania Bulczyńska said...

Anya! Despite the ALWAYS perfectly perfect photos and fantastic, pushing me into my chair stories behind the "mechanics" of your hats creating- this time I simply and above all all all LOVE, ADORE, DIVINIZE this headpiece. The first one was stunning. This one is... mmmmmm... No more words:-) I am so happy and lucky to be " touched" by your divine hands of a millinery Master!

Anonymous said...


VM Creation Atelier said...

Дорогая Аня,здравствуйте!

Я заранее готовлюсь к перечитыванию Вашего поста....:)*Я имею в виду внутренне,эмоционально. Потомучто знаю что появлению новой креации-шляпки обязательно сопутствует совершенно чудесная история! Настоящая история из жизни.

В начале с наслаждением смотрю великолепные фото,все детали которые можно разглядеть! Огромное спасибо за такие восхитительные фотографии Еду Хафизову!
Затем читаю Ваш пост на английском целиком................затем чувствую что где-то не совсем улавливаю неимоверно важные детали и начинаю переводить Ваш пост на Голландский язык,затем на русский.
Таким образом с удовольствием читаю Ваш пост на трех языках:)*

Ваш ''Ruby Hunter''не зря завоевал и продолжает завоевывать сердца людей!
Такой непредсказуемый творческий процесс и в результате-создание можно сказать настоящего шедевра в шляпном исскусстве,это ведь настоящее чудо!
Цвет рубиновый-абожаемой красоты здесь у Вас,Аня!!!

Искренне,с любовью и уважением,
Ваша В.

Lee Duncan is HatStruck said...

Wonderful story and as extremely beautiful hat!

gashflash said...

Can you tell me of you ever made a hat like this before? There was a bird of paradise hat for sale a lot like this in a boutique in Covent Garden about a decade ago and I'm trying to find out who the milliner was!

gashflash said...

Have you ever made any other bird of paradise jays?

Anya Caliendo said...

Dear Gashflash,

Thank you for your interest. All hats posted in this Blog are designed and created by me. :-) Any chance you have an image of the Bird Of Paradise Hat from Covent Garden? Birds of Paradise feathers are extremely rare and very hard to come by, they are truly a treasure to work with and, yes, absolutely, I design all kinds of hats including as you can see the ones with Bird of Paradise feathers. :-)