This was quite a fun project to pull off!
Annie loved this hat!
Except, the crown was too low and the brim too wide.
First, i saturated the straw with water, stay-stitched around the base of the crown in two rows 1/2" apart, and cut the crown from the brim in between those rows of stay-stitching. The water makes the straw stitchable and cuttable without splintering/cracking, and the stay-stitching keeps the weave from fraying.
The straw hatbody on the left has a section of similar vent-weaving as our existing crown, right. I decided to harvest that section of the hatbody to insert and lift our hat's crown to the desired height.
Here's the hat with its new tall crown (the insert's intentionally raggedy edge adds to its "distressed" look), it's brim cut down to a 2 1/4" width, and a wire inserted. The alligator clips hold the wire and brim edge in place for sewing, kind of like pins help orient a seam in fabric.
Wow, there it is as a totally different hat!