Romantic Era Bonnet Online Class

$ 49.00

Fall 2017: Our online classes have moved to a new platform that will make learning new sewing techniques, finishing projects, and communication with me as instructor SO much easier. Whoot!!

All previous and current students will have the opportunity to enroll on the new site without having to pay again for class access.

New site is available now and all classes are open for enrollment. Info has been sent to previous students from this registration site and to those on our newsletter list. If you are a previous student but did not receive an email with the new login info, please contact us.

A private Facebook group is available for all students. 

Romantic Era Bonnet Class

Complete your late Regency and Romantic Era ensembles! 


Many times the last part of a costume ensemble that comes together is headwear. You work on the dress, you get the petticoats made, you might even get the undergarments in order. But then, your mind catches the thought that you need a bonnet! Oh, dear. What to do?

I created this class for YOU. Those who put off the bonnet until the very end. Mainly because you're not exactly sure how to make one or even if you can! But I'm here to tell you that making a bonnet IS within your reach!   

Through 3 detailed lessons, I'll cover the steps to create a buckram frame bonnet with formed crown and wide brim (also known as a poke bonnet). Each lesson has 5 to 8 videos along with an accompanying PDF handout complete with homework assignments to keep you on track with your project.

 Class starts today!

"Thank you so much for [the 1880s Hat] class. I've made a few hats in the past but I appreciated your tutorials and lesson plans: they really expedited the process." ~Gailynne B.

  This class is for perfect for:
  • Intermediate-level crafters. You'll learn exactly how to complete each step but you should understand basic sewing techniques including hand sewing stitches like the whip and stab stitch. This is more of a crafting class rather than sewing and for the most part we'll stick with simple instructions for easy project completion.
  • Understanding how a buckram frame with a large brim goes together. 
  • Those who want to know the basics of millinery so you can improve your skills and tackle other hat and bonnet designs. (They are limitless. :-) )
  • Costumers who want to connect with others who are as crazy in their creativity as you are!

"Jennifer, you have to be detailed when writing sewing instructions.... One of the reasons my project is coming out so successfully is that you write very detailed instructions." ~Diane Ullman



  Detailed Lesson Plans Created for You:

Lesson 1: Discuss millinery supplies & tools, recommended fabrics, cutting tips and sewing wire to buckram by hand & machine

Lesson 2: Creating the bonnet frame; adding a mull layer then covering with fabric

Lesson 3: Embellishing with bias edging and trims; adding the curtain and ties; finishing with the inside lining

Although making a buckram bonnet can seem quite complicated, we'll walk through each step in detail so you know exactly what to do. 


Class Sewing Pattern: For this class, you have a variety of options for patterns (all sold separately). Below is a list of recommended patterns for the large brim bonnet shapes (called "poke bonnets"). You can also use a Regency bonnet pattern that has a separate brim and structured crown (not soft) as the construction is nearly the identical.


Miller's Millinery

  • #0602  1834-1840 Fashionable Bonnet - this is the pattern used in the class tutorials
  • #0601  1819-1834 Fashionable Bonnet
Lynn McMasters
  • 1830s Romantic Period Bonnet
  • Early Victorian Bonnet 1845-1865
  • Early 19 Century Seaside Bonnet
Timely Tresses
  • The Ophelia 1810-1820
  • The Virginia 1810-1820
D.L. Designs
  • #121 Poke Bonnet


Approximate Costs for Bonnet Making Supplies:

Due to several requests, I've tried to compile a cost list of specific supplies you'll need to make your bonnet. Please know that prices will vary depending on where you purchase them and if you already have them in your stash. The costs listed below are approximate based on current vendor research and personal knowledge. They are for reference only.

  • Pattern: $12-18 depending on selection
  • Buckram, 1/2 yard needed: $15-18/yd.
  • Millinery Wire, size 19 (2-3 yards needed): $1/yd.
  • Fabric, 1/2 yard silk (silk taffeta preferred but could use faux silk for budget reasons): $8-24/yd.
  • Flannel/Mull fabric, 1/2 yard: $2-6/yd.
  • Crinoline Tape or Bias: $3
  • Trims: varies per project with ribbons, florals & feathers desired

Some vendors may sell kits with the basic buckram/wire/needles for millinery projects and are a good deal generally.   



You have the opportunity to choose which time period of bonnet shape you want to make in class: the Romantic Era of the 1820s & 1830s (with a little into the 1840s) OR Regency Era of the 18-Teens. Some bonnet shapes work for many, many historical years! The techniques you learn in class will carry you far beyond this early part of the 19th Century too.

"I’ve made one buckram foundation hat to date. I did it but when I had a question there was no one to go to. Thanks to you, Jennifer, and your online 1880s hat tutorial, I watch the videos, do the work, refer back to the videos if needed and move forward to create with confidence. It’s like having my very own personal instructor by my side! Love it!!" ~Joy F.


Millinery Skills & Techniques You'll Learn:

    • Fabrics specifically recommended for early 19th C. millinery projects
    • How to sew wire to buckram by both hand and machine - two full tutorials!
    • Why you should add a mull layer to your bonnet frame
    • Cutting buckram the easy way (without having to pin your pattern to it)
    • Learning how & why to use a thimble (you won't forget to use it!)
    • Tips for getting the bonnet tip to fit into the formed crown section
    • How to cover a bonnet frame with fabric
    • Working with a curved needle (essential for sewing brim to crown)
    • Types of trims & their placement suitable for large bonnet styles
    • How to apply trims to bonnets
    • Adding a necessary lining to protect your hairstyle (so important!)

"I tried to make the [1880s] hat on my own, following the pattern instructions. Your class made the difference between a costume and an historical hat which I can now wear with pride. I can't recommend your classes enough." ~Becky Millinger



Intermediate Level Class (but beginners can join too) If you have sewing experience but are new to millinery, you will feel quite comfortable here. The class is designed for those who know very little about bonnet making. We'll be following general pattern instructions but also other techniques learned over the instructor's personal millinery creating experiences. You should be able to keep up with the class just fine.

If you are new to sewing or crafting, you are most welcome. However, you may need to rely on the glue rather than the hand stitching more often throughout the steps. Challenge yourself to something new!

If you are advanced in your sewing skills and have made/attempted bonnets or hats before, you are most welcome! Many of our students are advanced but take the classes simply as a means of personal accountability. And a way to get those pushed aside projects DONE. :-)


"I took Jennifer's Bustle Dress Hat online class and it was WONDERFUL. She is a great millinery teacher. ~Kari Gluski

Class begins when you're ready. All three lessons are available to you upon successful registration and do not expire. 

Be sure to download & print the handouts too for future projects!

Includes 3 full lessons with handouts, 2.5 hours of video tutorials, and a fabulous sewing project!

ATTENTION: We have a new class platform for our students - yay! If you enroll for this class on this page, please note the following steps to access the class:  

Upon successful registration students will receive:

1) download link at checkout (and also an email from SkyPilot with the link) to download the first PDF of class. Instructions are given in this PDF with the link to our new class platform and how to login and enroll there. Students will have information on how to bypass the enrollment fee on the new site.

2) an email invitation to join the Facebook workshop group (sent from FB within 24 hours). PLEASE let us know the email you use for Facebook if it is different from the one you use to enroll in this course. You can jump right in with questions in the group. The fun begins right away!

Thank you for the opportunity to sew with you!

Jennifer Rosbrugh, instructor

Happy Sewing!              


P.S. The class lessons are entirely online and self-paced with no specific day or time required to be online. You work at your own speed and schedule. Read the lessons and watch the videos when it’s most convenient for you. Head to the private Facebook group to post questions and get feedback when you need it. 

No refunds.

Attention EU students: our classes & workshops fall under the new 1/1/2015 digital VAT regulations. All online classes and workshops will have your EU country's VAT tax rate added at checkout. Class prices shown do not include VAT.

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