September 21, 2007

Portland Made - Jessie DeWall of Heating and Cooling

Jessie DeWall


Heating and Cooling

I've been secretly coveting Heating and Cooling's caps for quite a while now but it is time to spill! I'm not exactly a "hat" girl but with Jessie's sophisticated unisex vintage style I don't see how I could go wrong! The rich fibers and unique styles selected and then hand crafted stand out to me and scream, "Wear me!" Though these hats are far from loud or obnoxious they are completely refined and classy. Each of Heating and Cooling's wool, cotton, or rayon caps are lined and all seams are brilliantly hidden. Every cap features a narrow flexible brim with an elastic rim so that it will fit like a nice cozy comfy hug. Caps are even durable enough to be washed in cold water, and then line dried. You can find more of Jessie's designs online by visiting Etsy , Orange Button or by sending her an email at heating.and.cooling@gmail.com. Jessie also makes fantastic upcycled journals and mens cycling caps, check it out. Hope you enjoy this weeks Portland Made artist.











1. How long have you been designing hats, was it something that came to you naturally or did it take a bit of work?

I have been designing hats since the fall of 2004. I didn't know it then, but it was the beginning of what will someday be my career. It came very easily to me. It was an idea inspired by necessity. I could envision this hat, but could find it nowhere. With no prior knowledge of patternmaking or hat making, I went with my instincts and created a successful pattern on my first try. It is still the pattern I use today, although my patternmaking standards have far surpassed it. I ran into a few small issues in finding a proper material for stiffening the brim, but other than that found myself in business. I have sold hundreds of them through word of mouth, and right when I think it's over, another surge comes my way.


2. When you're choosing your fabric do you go in to the store with something in mind or does the fabric just call out to you?

I do get a lot of inspiration from fabric I run across. I find myself wondering around fabric stores for hours on end to ensure that I'm not overlooking some amazingly rare, strange fabric. I am obsessed also with supplies: sewing, office, and anything handy really. I am inspired by all of these things. All of my men's hats have a small piece of reflective ribbon on the back, something I began collecting long before I even knew what I would do with it. I just thought it was really special and it can be hard to find in the kind of stores I have access to. Although I inevitably fall in love with fabrics that I have no need for, they are often the starting point for garments or accessories I am very inspired to make. When I'm running short on time or money though, I can at least limit myself to a certain weight or color of fabric, that helps narrow it down and keep me focused.

3. I see you're also into upcycling and have some fabulous hardbound journals in your Etsy shop. Do you have future plans to expand your shop, and what form do you ultimately see your shop taking?

I have a hard time warming up to things that are shiny and new, so I find myself searching for those perfectly dulled items that are just waiting to be reinvented. That is a general rule for all things that I make. I also see the value in recycling for the sake of preservation, and do so whenever possible. I love the idea of sustainable fabrics as well, but find them inaccessible at the moment. I look forward to having access to these materials at a more affordable cost so that they are in turn accessible to you. Although I take full advantage of these resources when I can, it is not a rule that I adhere completely to, just yet. As for my Etsy shop, I always intend to have more for sale than I actually have time to make. I have piles of amazing fabrics just waiting to be made into hats. Unfortunately, I am busy sewing for fun, school, and work. As a result of my ideas outgrowing my knowledge, I am learning apparel design at the Art Institute. After two years, I am now fully capable to designing clothing, and hope to one day sell on Etsy and in the more distant future, in a shop of my own. The journals also began out of necessity. I again found myself struggling to find a journal of my liking, so I created it. The satisfaction of customizing something into such a tidy polished little package, is undeniable to me. It is, however, more a labor of love than anything else.

4. How can local Portlander’s get their hands on your work outside of Etsy?

As much as I would love to be, I am not currently selling my hats in stores, but am glad to do custom orders when contacted. I can be emailed at heating.and.cooling@gmail.com. I also plan to attend various craft shows over the holidays, including Crafty Wonderland.

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