Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Custom Up-cycled Hat Tutorial

Here is another great tutorial from Lindsey, who you met a few weeks ago. She blogs over at Ovenlesschef.

I leave you in her capable hands: 

Lindsey: "Disclaimer: All photos have this atrocious yellow flooring in them, so please view at your own discretion.  Thank you and happy crafting." 

Let me start off by apologizing for the picture quality.
A: The 70’s called and wants its nasty linoleum flooring back… I guess I forgot to return that call.
B: I am still on a tutorial-creating learning curve… as in this is my second one EVER, so a little mercy here. Thanks.
C: I really DO have a nice camera and I really DO know how to use it, even in low lighting. I DO however, have it packed in its case in a carry-on suitcase and the point and shoot was just sitting there begging me to use it rather than getting off my bum and going into the cold room in which the SLR lives. (AKA, I was being LAZY)
That being said, I also need to inform you that I am a night crafter. I have a four year old and a four month old, therefore free-time only coincides with sleep-time. And more often than not, sleep-time results in sleep-time for me too… so consider yourselves lucky I managed to get this post done in the same month I set out to complete it… (The Lord still works miracles!)  

Whew. Now that I got that off my chest and have apologized in advance, let’s get down to business. Gabi approached me on making a tutorial for these hats after I had whipped up a couple for my four year old and husband as Christmas gifts. I got the inspiration from “I am momma hear me roar” but I didn’t want ear flaps. (And let’s just pretend mine are as cute as hers, okay? Okay. Good.) As with any first-time project, there were tweaks and failures… totally bombed the hat I was attempting for the baby. But… after the buzz of the holidays wore off, I was determined to make the baby a hat too.  I did not use a pattern, therefore, each hat you make will be unique and slightly different, but that is what makes them so fun. 

What you need:
*A knit of some sort, be it recycled t-shirts or sweats (depending on the weather you intend the hat for) this is a great project for using up those old clothes… especially those shirts that you love the graphics or pattern on.  (Preferably two or three different fabrics that coordinate.)
* tape-measure and ruler/ grid cutting mat
*calculator… most computers or phones come with one ;)
* sewing basics… aka needle/machine, thread, scissors, fabric pen, pins…
*Most importantly, your CREATIVITY! 

Step 1:
Measure the circumference of the head for which you will be making the hat, then add 2 cm (3/4”) for seam allowance. (If you are making it as a surprise for someone, I put some standard measurements at the bottom of the tut for you to use as a guide) 

Step 2:
Divide the measurement by 5, giving you the top layer’s measurements.
{Example: Circumference= 60 cm (23 ½“) divided by 5 [60/5]= 12cm(4 ¾”). so your measurements would be 60cm X 12cm (23 ½” X 4 ¾”) }
Cut two rectangles of fabric measuring these dimensions. One will be for the top of the hat and the other for the bottom rim/hem. 

Cut a strip measuring the same length (60cm/ 23 ½” ) with a width based on how chunky of a strip you want for your hat. (about 4cm/1 ¾”  for smaller hats and 6cm/ 2 ½”  for larger ones)
So now you have three strips, all with the same length (circumference) and two taller, one shorter.  (Yeah don’t have a pic for that one… lame, I know, you can boo and hiss at the screen if you’d like. )

Step 3:
Take one of the larger rectangles and fold in half with the right side facing out. On the inside of the fold, make a mark with your fabric pen (or regular pen since it will be on the inside of the seams) on both the top and bottom of the fold. 

Open the fabric and fold each end to the center marks you just made and mark on the top and bottom interior of the folds again.
(Do this on both ends)

Step 4:
When you open the fabric, you should have three sets of marks that divide the fabric into four sections.

Step 5:
On the bottom on the rectangle, draw a line the length of the rectangle about 2cm/3cm (¾” / 1 ¼”) from the bottom edge, based on small/large hat. 
Now draw lines extending from your top marks straight down to the line you just drew across the length.  Make cuts down these lines, stopping at the point where the lines intersect. 

Step 6:
Here comes the not-so-scientific part.  With each of the four tabs, you will now cut them into football-esk dome shapes. (You can measure and mark the center of each of the four tabs if you’d like, but don’t have to. See picture above for visual. )

(see, the domes look football-esk shaped, well… they look like one end of a football at least. )

Step 7:
Pin the outer-side of each dome together, leaving the ends of the rectangle unpinned. (yep, forgot to take a photo of this step)Sew seams. * You can add a tab, or tag, to the hat by inserting a piece of ribbon or even the tag from a shirt to the top by folding in half, with outer-side facing out, and pin with the fold facing in toward the bulk of the hat. (see picture) I recommend backstitching over this on the machine to prevent fraying.

(This picture combines step 7 and 8)

Step 8:
Pin the thinner strip to the top with the outer-sides together. Sew seam. (See above picture.)

Step 9:
Pin the last strip to the top with outer-sides together. Sew seam.
You now have the base of your hat with an open mid-seam and in need of a hem.  This is the best place to go ahead and add any embellishments, be it embroidery, attaching appliqu├ęs, or even iron-on decals!

Step 10:
Pin and sew mid-seam. Try on and sew deeper seam if too loose.

Step 11:
Pin and hem hat using existing hat as guide, or marking while on model/recipients head, OR using guide at end of tutorial. 

(Using well fitting hat as guide)

Bada-bing. Bada-bang.  You now have a fun hat to give, or keep.  One you can proudly say you made (even if it dons a brand label in the design)! 

(A plain version without embellishments added, but rather detail stitching… make this hat to suit your own style! 
(embellished using details from sweatshirt I deconstructed)


(another example)

So pull out those sweatshirts with the too-short sleeves or that favorite old tee with nasty pit stains and make a cute hat;) 
(And of course…. The Cuteness)

Here are the measurement guidelines for hat-making… see this page for more details on using these guides.

HC=Head Circumference
HC: 13" - 14 " 33-36cm; hat circ = 11.5" - 13" Hat height = 5.5 to 6" 13-15 cm

*Baby - 3 to 6 months 

HC: 14" - 17 " 36-43 cm; Hat height= 6.5 - 7" 15-18 cm

*Baby - 6 to 12 months 

HC: 16" - 19 " 41-48 cm ; Hat height = 7.5" 18 cm

*Toddler - preschooler (12 months - 3 years) 

HC: 18" to 20 " 46 -48 cm; Hat height = 8" 20 cm

*Child (3 - 10 years) 

HC: 19" - 20 1/2" 48-51 cm; Hat height =8.5" 22cm

*Pre-teens and Teens Hat 

HC: 20 1/2" - 22" 53 -56 cm; height 9-10" 25 cm

*Adult Woman 

HC: 21.5" - 22.5" Hat height = 11"

*Adult Man 

HC: 23" - 24" 58.4 cm - 61 cm; Hat height = 11"-11.5"

Happy crafting!!