Wednesday, September 25, 2013

DIY Paper bag hat

 I made this newsboy hat for Jaxon out of a paper bag for "Crazy Hat Day". I always wanted to understand the construction of a hat, so this was a great experiment for me. I guess I could've sewn this out of fabric, but it just didn't sound as fun as making it out of paper! Here's how I made this.

1. Print this template out to a desired size and cut around the outer edges. If you print this template out the maximum size is only 7 1/2"  or so. You will need to blow up the image if you plan to have it fit an adult size head. Printing on thicker paper is ideal because you will be tracing these onto fabric or a paper bag.

2. Trace the number of panels as noted on each pattern.
    The one labeled "brim stiffener" trace onto a thicker paper. I used a sturdy postcard.

3. Cut them out.

* TIP * After you cut out the pieces, and if you decide to use a brown paper bag like I did, I recommend      crumpling each piece in your hands to tenderize the material a bit. It will be easier to work with. Otherwise  brown paper bag can be quite stiff.

4. It made it easier for me to draw in the seam allowance on each panel when it came time to sewing them      together. I recommend folding along the seam allowance by making creases.

 5. Sew and/or glue (I recommend a hot glue gun), along the seam allowance, starting with the 8 panels for the top of the hat. You will be working inside out.

 6. Flip it out and add the two " facing " panels. Again glue or sew the facing to the bottom seam allowance of all 8 panels. Don't worry if it isn't perfect, you can always cover flaws with decoration. In my case, I used washi tape to mimic a band.

 7. Now you will be adding the brim. First glue the two pieces of the "brim" along the seam allowance that will be facing out. Flip inside out. Put the "brim stiffener" in the middle of the now moon shaped pocket, and glue/sew down the seam allowance onto the hat. I used washi tape along the interior to tape down the excess "facing" seam allowance to finish off the hat. I didn't need to use the "cap lining" since I made mine out of paper. But you may want to if you are creating one out of fabric to cover the interior flaws.

8. Now the fun part. Decorate it however you like! I used an old earbud cover from a set of head phones I had, and filled it with paper stuffing to create the button. Black glitter paint was used to give the hat some sparkle and a distressed/weathered leather look.

I attached the hat to a headband by sewing it on with embroidery thread. The hat I made is 7 1/2" diameter to give you an idea. Happy Crazy Hat Day!