I thought I would add a short post on how to make a Regency hat .The hat can also be made into a bonnet though I have only worn this as a semi Tricorn hat.It will take around an hour or possibly two to make depending on how much detail you add and cost around £10
The foundation of the bonnet /hat is one of these.Faux straw sun visors,They can be bought very cheaply on line from china and in an assortment of colours ,I use darker colours as they look more authentic .The hat above was made with a Khaki colour hat
I have used a blue on for the hat made here
You will need
needle and thread
around a metre of ribbon or two shorter pieces,this is for ties for the hat so while a long piece would be ideal if you have bits of ribbon lying around and they will be long enough for ties that will work .
a button,piece of fancy ribbon ,rossette or similar for the front of the turned up brim
a piece fabric around the size you would use for a cushion cover ,ideally in taffeta ,silk or velvet but at a pinch you could use dark cotton if your making a tricorn as the fabric wont show much for that style.The perfect fabric is shot taffeta which is a fabric thats shimmery and fairly crsip
a piece of fancy ribbon ,extra wide ribbon ,embroidered trim or similar to make a band around the crown or for making bows etc
Even assuming you buy fabric ribbon and a feather the hat should still cost around £10
First take your “hat and unravel it leave it for a few minutes or so ,I cut the straw bow off and throw it away as its quite big but you can leave it on .You could lay it next to your fabric to be sure it matches .
To make your hat into a hat you need to make the top or crown ,which will be made using your fabric piece .Take the fabric and gather it up using a running stitch.
,leave a small amount ungathered so it will make it easier to stitch it one the brim
Try the straw hat on and fasten it with the velcro ,make a note of where on the velcro strip that hat will need to be for the best fit .Un velcro and start to sew the gathered fabric onto the brim.Its easier to leave the hat undone so you can sew without it flopping about over your hands
If you stitch it onto the outside of the brim it will leave the inside nice and neat but its not essential as the inside wont be seen
Sew the fabric on until you reach the last un gathered part ,now velcro the hat together and add some stitches to keep it in place.if you push the fabric inside while your doing the sewing its much easier to see what your doing
now turn it right side out
You can leave the fabric loose but I usually gather it as it looks more authentic
Next add a “hat band”,using a piece of of trim or ribbon for now just stitch it on across the top edge
At this point you can make either a bonnet as seen above or a hat ,I havent ever used these wrap hats as a bonnet so I am not sure how effective they are but if you buy a straw visor that works very well
Next add ribbon ties ,you can tuck these under the trim used for the band .Check that the ribbons are in the right place as this will affect how the hat looks because they are used to draw the hat over your face
finish sewing the band down and see how it looks when tied under your chin
sew the back part of the hat flush against the hat band and tack the front up the same way cover the stitches with a bow or button or rossette
add feathers .
Unfortunately the mannequin head is tilted slightly so the hat wont sit properly on it but heres the finished hat
Heres how similar hats look when on with a full outfit
There is a guide on making an easy Regency gown here