From drab to fab- Boater/Platter hat conversion

Like with anything you do, it’s fun to look back and see how far you have progressed. The same can be said for my pinup style. As I’m growing more into my own style I’m finding I’m wanting to try hats more and more, but finding pieces that I like that are also affordable can be quite the challenge.
Online searches just led to disappointment but being the crafty gal I am, I had an idea.
If I can’t find exactly what I want, I’ll get the closest thing and turn it into what I want!
I picked up this straw boater hat for under $10 on Ebay (you can find them even cheaper but I didn’t want to wait for shipping from China) and got to work.

To begin with you’ll need a few things.
-hot glue gun & glue
-Scissors & pinking shears (optional)
-Ribbons and embellishments of your choice- these are important as they will cover where we will cut and glue the hat back together
(I chose a cream colour ribbon and purple cotton velveteen)
-Needle & thread
-Hair comb and/or hat pins


Let’s get started.

Use your ribbon as an indicator for how tall you want your hat, mark where to cut.
Using your scissors, carefully pierce a whole in the hat and then cut all the way around.
Do this carefully and as neatly as possible, we will be using the top part of the hat that was removed. Since the hat is constructed by wrapping the straw strands in an upwards spiral motion, the cut won’t be level, just go over this to get it as even as possible.


To create the new top part of the hat, simply push the top piece that was cut away into the base.

*If you are not going to be covering the top with fabric, the way you will join the 2 pieces will differ from what I’ve done here.  If you are not using any ribbons or other embellishments, the top of the hat will need to go on the outside of the base where the seam can blend in with the brim. If you were planning or using ribbon, cut the base lower, leaving enough space to glue the 2 pieces together, and place the top piece on the outside as I have done. Your ribbon should cover the seam*

Once you’re sure you are happy with the new height, glue it in place. For extra security, I then hand stitched it together once the glue was dry. You can do either, or, or both.


*This next part is entirely optional.*
To create the fabric covered top, turn the hat upside down and use your marker to draw around the top of the hat leaving about a 1 inch gap. Then use your pinking shears to cut this out so that it won’t fray.


Next glue this to the hat using hot glue. Be mindful of the amount of glue you are using, as big dollops will give your fabric top a lumpy look.
Glue the top down first working in small sections, trim down a little of the excess fabric and then glue and smooth down the sides.


As you can see, it looks super messy and unfinished, this is where the ribbon comes in.
It not only looks adorable, but it also helps cover any unfinished edges and adds a more polished look.
Place the ribbon around the hat and glue in place. When you get to the end, trim the excess and glue down to secure.


To create the cute bow, tie a knot in your ribbon and then tie a bow to whatever size you like. Don’t forget to leave enough excess to create the ribbon tails.
Then just hot glue inside of the knot so the bow won’t unravel, then I attached it to the hat with more glue and for extra security, you can add a hand stitch to keep it in place.


Next came the tricky part. Working out how to secure the hat to my head.
I originally used safety pins and hair clips, this worked but didn’t feel entirely secure and was not fast car, on a highway with windows down friendly.
So after this initial test run I had a brainwave and found a better solution.
Sew hair combs on the inside of the hat!
To do this, hand stitch a hair comb on either side of the hat, keeping the stitches slightly loose to that the combs can be moved to make pushing them into your hair easier.


For extra security, you can use a hat pin at the base of the hat or add ribbons on the underside of the hat to be tied under the chin.

Overall I’m really happy with how it turned out and will be getting another to make a plain one without the fabric so I can wear it with any colour as the perfect way to top off a summer outfit.

Outfit details
Dress- Lindy Bop
Hair Flower- Regal & Roses
Sandals- Kmart Australia
Sunglasses- Boohoo
Wicker bag- Vintage 

Thanks for stopping by. Hopefully this helps you get your hat game on without breaking the budget. Feel free to tag me in your craft creations @missditamalteese
Aussie gals, if you want to make your own hat and don’t want to wait for the post man, Kmart have a straw wide brim hat that would be perfect for this project.

Miss Dita Malteese

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