I used two methods of straw hat-making for the Opera Theater St Louis 2019 season. For Marriage of Figaro, designed by Constance Hoffman, I free-form stitched strip straw into the desired shape for Barbarina's hat. The crown and brim were formed separately and stitched together. For Rigoletto, designed by Mark Bouman, I stitched the straw onto a buckram base for added stability. The hat was worn by Gilda, but also needed to be worn by Rigoletto's ventriloquist dummy after the abduction, and the preset tracking dictated that a duplicate hat was needed. Both hats were made in the same manner, with different ribbon on the duplicate.
Photo by David Levy Pictured: Elena Villalon Costume Design: Constance Hoffman
Photo by David Levy Pictured: So Young Park and Roland Wood Costume Design: Mark Bouman
Photo by David Levy Pictured: So Young Park Costume Design: Mark Bouman
Photo by David Levy Pictured: Roland Wood Costume Design: Mark Bouman