Monday, January 28, 2013

Anthro Display Hack: Hat Stand

I'm planning on adding hats to my Etsy shop soon, and have been searching online for inspiration and advice for photography. One site somewhat obviously suggested checking out companies whose product photography you like, and I immediately thought Anthropologie. Their product photos are taken on a white background and use few models, which is what I like in my photography. Here's the hat stand I came across that I fell in love with, and is also my model for my copycat stand:

Cute, right? A simple wire hat stand. I found the original source to buy one, but it was almost $25 including shipping. Call me cheap but I'm not willing to pay that, so I made a trip to JoAnn's, picked up some wire, and made it yesterday evening. Here's what I came up with using $2 of wire:

Boom. Mine is shorter and appears larger in this photo but it works. I have to work on getting a few kinks out of the base, but overall, a success. See the quick tutorial below. I wasn't planning on this being a tutorial, so if you have any questions, please leave them in the comments.

Click on photo to enlarge.
1. Get your supplies: Tape measure, 12 gauge wire (two 3 yard rolls), wire cutters, and a bowl that measures approximately 18" around.
2. This is the wire I purchased. It was $1.99 a roll but with two 50% off coupons from JoAnn's, it was $1.99 for two rolls. You don't want any wire much thinner than this or it won't be able to support a hat.
3. Cut four-one yard long sections of wire. Measure to the halfway point (18") of each section. This will be the top of the hat stand. Mold one piece of wire around the overturned bowl until it intersects. Twist to hold in place. Measure 2" down from the circle you just created and bend the wire outward. Using the bowl again, bend the wire down until it forms a half circle. See photo. Repeat until you have four shaped wires.
4. Set your four forms inside each other and fan out until it resembles a sphere. Attach them together at the top with a small piece of wire.
5. Wrap wire around the top and bottom of the straight section to hold in place.
6. Cut a piece of wire approximately 20" and make a circle around your bowl, wrapping the wire ends around each other to hold the circle's shape. Wrap each of the end wires of your stand around the circle and trim.
7. Cut another piece of 20" wire and make another circle around your bowl, wrapping the wire ends around each other to hold in place. Connect around the middle of the sphere in four places.

That's it! I think I'm going to use these at an artisan's market this spring and fall to show off my hats! Might even make some taller and shorter to complete a display. I haven't decided yet if I want to spray paint the stand, leave as is, or do something fun like wrapping strips of fabric around and gluing. Such a fun project!