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Mad Hatter Hats

Extract from Everything Alice • By Hannah Read-Baldry and Christine Leech • Published by Quadrille


$ $ $ $ $
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If you’ve a wedding, garden, mad or fancy dress party to attend, one of these hats is sure to get you noticed.

For a Mad Hatter’s tea party, one must be modelling the very latest head gear! Why not try your hand at making one of our designs? We used contemporary materials mixed with the traditional – such as sinamay, a brightly coloured starched gauze, which comes in pliable strips and hat bases. The wonderful thing about millinery is that anything goes. Especially when you are a Mad Hatter!

EVERYTHING ALICE by HANNAH READ-BALDREY and CHRISTINE LEECH, published by Quadrille (£14.99, paperback). Cover illustration by HANNAH-READ BALDREY. Photos ©TIFFANY MUMFORD

Posted by Quadrille Published See Quadrille's 56 projects »

© 2022 Hannah Read-Baldry / Quadrille · Reproduced with permission.
  • How to make a hat. Mad Hatter Hats - Step 1
    Step 1

    Flamingo Headpiece

    To make the loops, bend the first 10cm of the sinamay bias binding into an elongated loop. Stitch securely with invisible thread. Do not cut. Repeat with the next 20cm of the binding for the concertina effect. Repeat a further three times, each time adding another 10cm to the loop.

    Fix the loops to the headpiece with a line of stitches along the lower edge of the longest loop. Stitch securely in place at the front.

    Split the fan of feathers into groups of five. Place them between each loop, then sew in place.

  • How to make a hat. Mad Hatter Hats - Step 2
    Step 2

    Cup & Saucer Hat

    To cover the plant pot, place a pen mark on the inside rim of the pot. Make 
a snip in the fabric and lie the pot on its side so the pen mark lines up with the snip. Roll the pot along the fabric until it has done a full rotation. Make another snip. Adding a 2cm seam allowance on all sides, cut out the slightly curved rectangle between snips. Clip and notch the seam allowance at 1cm intervals. 

    Pour a little PVA glue into a pot and soften with a dash of water. Paint the glue onto the wrong side of the fabric rectangle and smooth onto the plant pot. Trim the overlapping side seam to neaten. Turn the seam allowances over at the rim and base.

    To cover the inside of the pot, cut small strips of fabric to the height of the pot. Glue the strips neatly to the inside of the pot. For the inner base lining, trace around the pot’s base and cut out a fabric disc. Glue the fabric disc to the inside base for a neat finish.

    To make the saucer, cut a 16cm disc from the card. Cut a 20cm disc from the fabric. Glue the card to the centre of the fabric. Clip and notch the 2cm seam allowance and take over to the back of the card disc. Glue in place. Allow to dry thoroughly.

    Cut a teacup handle from the card and spray with gold paint. Spray the teaspoon with gold paint. Allow to dry.

    With a hot glue-gun, fix the teacup to the saucer then attach the handle. Glue the spoon to the saucer. Decorate with the gold rope trim. Glue the cup and saucer at an angle to the headpiece.

  • How to make a hat. Mad Hatter Hats - Step 3
    Step 3

    White Rabbit Ears

    To make the frame, twist together the ends of the wire to form one large loop. Trim any sharp ends. Keeping the wire flat, pinch the middle together. Mould each side into an ear, forming two petal shapes in a figure of eight.

    Fold the fabric in half with wrong sides facing. Sandwich the wire frame in between the fabric. Pin in place. Trim any excess fabric along the open edges, leaving a 3cm seam allowance. Tuck in the seam allowance and pin – stretch the fabric taut but do not pull the frame out of shape. Machine stitch around the outer edges.

    To attach the ears to the headband, fold the ears in half at the central point so both are facing foward. Feed the headband in between and wrap the back ear around the front ear to make a knot. Check that the ears are securely fixed and will not move around when worn. Curve the ear tips inwards. 

    For the pearl decoration, cut a 20cm length of wire and thread on the pearlescent beads. Tuck into the ear knot and twist the ends of the wire together. Trim any sharp ends.

  • How to make a hat. Mad Hatter Hats - Step 4
    Step 4

    Playing Card Hat

    Cut out the felt shapes in varying sizes (4–6cm). Cut two hearts and two diamonds from red felt, two spades and one small and one large club from black felt, and one card shape from white felt.

    Glue the small club to the card shape. Mould a semi-circle shape out of the wire and glue the ends slightly to one side of the hairband using a hot glue-gun. Attach the shapes with a slight overlap onto the wire. To finish, cut a 1cm x 30cm strip of black felt and glue to the back of the wire, gluing 1cm at each end to the hairband.

  • How to make a hat. Mad Hatter Hats - Step 5
    Step 5

    White Rose Hat

    Fold each of the small and large circles into quarters and trim the curved edges into heart shapes. Unfold and place the large circles one on top of another in sets of five, alternating the fabrics and colours. Don’t worry about lining them up too neatly. Repeat with the small circles. You will now have five sets of small circles and four sets of large circles.

    Fold each set of five into quarters and sew a few stitches at the point to secure the circles together.

    Take the disc of felt and sew the four larger petal quarters to its centre, creating a circle. On top of this sew four of the five smaller petal quarters, staggering the first quarter so the top and bottom set don’t line up.

    Sew the fifth petal quarter into the centre of the rose. To plump up the rose, separate each set of petals by pulling individual petals away from each other. For extra stiffness spray the rose with the starch and iron individual tips.

    Stitch the haircomb into place on the felt disc and wear with pride.

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