Victorian Boys’ Hat Tutorial

This term at school, J’s topic is “The Victorians”, and a couple of weeks ago we were told that tomorrow the children would be required to be in Victorian dress and they would be re-enacting a day in a Victorian school. Cue the search for a Victorian outfit…

A quick search brings up a boy dressed in raggedy, too small trousers, shirt and waistcoat, with a flat cap/baker boy type hat. The waistcoat, shirt and trousers are not a problem – we have an outfit that can be adapted into that. The hat proved more tricky and in the end I bought some brown felt and decided to have a bash at making one. I did scour the t’interwibble for instructions, but didn’t come up with anything resembling an easy tutorial, so I figured I’d do my own, in case anyone else found themselves in my position. So here it is:

You will need:

an old baseball cap
some felt (I used 2 full sheets, the type you get from Hobbycraft or similar)
thread, needle and pins

Hat and felt

1) Measure the size of the triangles that make up the baseball cap, and add on about 5cm to the length, and 2cm to the width (at the widest point).

Mark triangles2) Cut the triangles out and pin together, with the points in the centre, so that the felt takes on a bowl shape.

3) Cut a piece of felt to fit over the peak of the baseball cap, and glue or sew (or both) to the underside.

Sew bowl of hat onto existing cap3) Sew the bowl-shaped felt around the edge of the baseball cap, with the raw edge of the seams inside. The new outer of the hat will be larger than the baseball cap was, giving it a baggy appearance.

4) I then sewed a band of felt around the bottom of the cap, so give a secure fit around the head.

Victorian boyAnd that’s it. It took me about an hour and a half from start to finish, and I cut the triangles out of paper first to make sure they would fit. There will be some gathering around the edge of the felt, which makes it look nice and voluminous. To be honest, if i was doing it again, I would probably make the triangles a bit longer still, but J is more than happy with it as a finishing touch for his outfit, so that’s good enough for me.

I hope this helps if anyone else needs a Victorian hat!

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3 thoughts on “Victorian Boys’ Hat Tutorial

  1. Shanee Thomson says:

    Hi there
    Just wanted to thank you for your helpful instructions as to how to make a victorian hat for a boy. I made one for my son last Sunday and it worked out really well. Thank you once again your help inspired me to have a go:)

  2. Wendy Lippmann says:

    Dear Claire,
    I was really pleased to find your site 2 days before Victorian Day ! The hat has worked out great ! I wouldn’t have had the confidence to do it without your instructions. All set to go now. Thanks very much.

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