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Judith Van Atta Roenke. I am a Navy Submariner wife. Triathlete. I am the proud mommy of Henry the Fifth and Peter Tristum. Welcome to my Blog...

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Fabric Party Hat Tutorial

I wanted to make a sock monkey party hat for Henry the Fifth's first birthday. I couldn't find a tutorial for a fabric party hat. This is my attempt at documenting how I made his.

Paper Party hat
shirt box or cereal box
fabric of choice
matching and contrast scrap strips/remnants
fusible interfacing
pinking shears
ric rac
1/4 inch elastic

1. Open a store bought paper hat and trace onto an old box top or cereal box. Cut out template. You can use the actual paper hat as your template if you don't need it for guests later.
(There is a PDF template by scholastic here, but it is small compared to a store bought hat.) (Note: on my template I left the tab used for a paper hat to connect together. This was not necessary and will get cut off. Next time I will omit this tab.)

2. Using the template, trace and cut out your fabric and fusible interfacing using pinking shears. Make sure the sticky side of the interfacing matches the wrong side of the hat fabric.

3. Iron the interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric following the directions on the interfacing.

4. (This step was added later when I realized the hat needed reinforcing.) Cut three 1 inch strips of interfacing to run from the top to the bottom of the hat. Iron on in equidistant spacing. Depending on the weight of your hat topper, you may need more reinforcement. It is possible to add later as needed, just easier to add now.

4. Measure and cut 2 lengths of ric rac to trim the perimeter of the hat bottom. Machine sew onto the hat. I chose contrasting colors I later picked up in the hat topper.

5. Fold the hat right side together matching the edges. (Note: on the template I left the tab used for a paper hat to connect together. This was not necessary and will get cut off.)

6. Sew hat edge with right sides together with 1/4 inch seam. If you haven't already, cut off the extraneous tab.

8. Turn right side out.

9. Make hat topper.

9a. I made a huge pompom following this tutorial by Molly Chicken. The pompom came out beautifully. Unfortunately, the weight of it was too much for the hat to handle, even after reinforcing.

My pompom circle.
Cutting the pompom.

I don't have a photo of the hat with the giant pompom squishing the hat down.

Hat topper, 2nd attempt....
The following is the fix I did to create a smaller pompom-esque fringe for the top of the hat.

9b. Cut 10 to 15, 1/2 inch thick strips of matching and contrasting fabric approximately 6 inches long. (I pulled about 10-15 strips out of the cute, giant pompom I made.)

9c. Thread a needle with matching thread. Knot the end. Push needle thru fabric at the top of the hat so the knot is on the inside of the hat. Then, push needle and thread thru the middle of all of your strips. Arrange strips on the thread so that they hang down in all directions. Bring needle and thread back down thru the fabric strips and thru the tip of the hat again. Repeat until the topper is secure. Be sure to keep the strips from getting caught in the loop of the thread as you sew.

(This is actually an after party shot, as you can tell by the buttercream frosting on the hat!)

You can sort of see how I sewed it on here.
10. Measure a length of elastic to go under the chin of the birthday person. I set the hat on the baby and held the elastic in place. If your birday person is not available, then guesstimate.
(In this view you can see the reinforcing that I added.) Hand tack the elastic to the inside of the hat on either side, making sure the seam is in the back.


(Launder: I hand washed his hat with woolite and it kept it's shape nicely.)

Please comment with questions so that I can edit the tutorial to future use.

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