This is a quick tutorial for what I call an “Eddie Cap”- that’s Eddie up there ^ . I still consider myself a new sewer so I’m sure there are many other and better ways to accomplish some of these steps, but this is how I do it. 😉
In this tutorial, I will be sewing a cap which will fit a 4-6 year old. I will try to point out the steps that you will need to adjust if you are making a smaller or larger cap.
Okay, now get your stuff together:
- A little less than ½ yard medium to heavy weight cotton, canvas or as in this tutorial, I used wool.
- Lightweight Interfacing for bill and one band
- Chalk or something temporary to mark the fabric
- Sewing machine with matching thread (with a Walking Foot if you have one, but it’s not necessary)
Seam allowances are ½” unless directed otherwise.
This tutorial is meant for personal use. Please do not sell Eddie Caps made from this tutorial.
Ready? Here we go:
1. Measure the largest part of the head for your cap to get your circumference. For my boys, their heads are about 21″.
2. Cut out your pieces:
- Cut two bands– the length of both bands will be the circumference of your head + 1″ ease + 1″ seam allowances. So for my hats, it was 21″ + 1″ + 1″ = 23″ inches for my band lengths. For the widths, one band should be 2″ x 23″ for the inside of the cap and the other should measure 2 ½” x 23″ for the outside band.
- Cut two rectangles measuring 8½” x 5″.
- Cut one 12″ square.
3. Make your 12″ square into an octagon with 5″ sides:
- Measure 3½” in both horizontally and vertically from each corner and mark.
- Connect your marks at each corner using your ruler to form a triangle.
- Check your work to be sure all your sides will be about 5″ before cutting.
- Cut off triangles at each corner. Viola! You have your octagon.
Please note that this is not a “perfect” octagon, but that it’s sides are about 5″.
(I think this size octagon should work for one size smaller or larger caps ranging in head circumferences of +/- 1 inch.)
4. Make your bill:
- Stack you rectangles making sure everything is lined up.
- Fold rectangles in half long-wise so that it measures 4¼” x 5″.
- Draw a wide curve starting about 2 inches up from the bottom at the side edge and ending at the top of the fold.
- Cut on your line.
- Open and make any adjustments for the shape of bill you desire.
- Apply interfacing. (The type of interfacing here will depend on how stiff you want your bill. For mine, I like the softer look so I used lightweight stuff that was fusible for easy application. Also, I applied it to only one piece which I will use as the top of the bill.)
5. Sew bill:
- With right sides together, stitch around outside curved edge leaving the bottom straight edge open.
- Trim seam and clip at curves.
- Turn and press making sure all seams are pushed out. (I like to use a chopstick.)
- Topstitch if desired. (I’ve tried both with and without, but prefer 3 to 4 rows of topstitching for a more finished look.)
- Cut a curve across bottom open edge to somewhat match the top curve of the bill and set aside. * After making these a few more times, I’ve found that you should be cutting off a lot here. In the middle of the bill- the middle of your arch, the bill should only measure about 3″ wide and 4″ wide at the ends. Otherwise, your bill will be too long and floppy.
6. Now for the bands:
- Apply interfacing to the wider, 2½” x 23″ Outside band. (For this, I like to use lightweight double-sided interfacing to help keep the hemming in place on Step 11.)
- Sew each band together at sides to make 2 circles. Press seams open. Be sure right sides are together and for the interfaced band, the interfacing should be on the inside.
- Overcast, zigzag or pink along one long edge of the 2″ x 23″ Inside band.
7. Next, find your bill and baste bill to interfaced band, right sides together, making sure the band seam is in the back.
8. Sew together bands at bottom edge sandwiching bill making sure right sides are together and the band seams are lined up in the back. For the Inside band, make sure the edge you finished in Step 6 is free and is NOT the edge that is sewn together to the Outside band. (The finished edge will be flipped up into the cap and sewn onto the top portion of the cap once it’s all put together.)
In this photo above, the bands are pinned with right sides together. Your seam should be at the bottom edge where the pin heads are in the photo. Don’t worry if the bands don’t fit together perfectly so don’t do any trimming! When you sew them together, it all works out and it fits.
Here you see the bands are stitched together, but the Inside finished edge is free.
9. Clip curve at bill and press seam together.
10. Press Outside band folding down 1/2″ to form hem at the top of the band. Be sure that the Inside finished edge extends a little beyond the folded Outside band so that it can be easily stitched down with the top of cap.
11. Form top of cap:
- Starting at one edge of the octagon with the wrong side facing up, fold in point 1″ matching bottom edges.
- Now fold the top back, keeping the edges lined up and pin.
- Now fold the other side. To be sure you have it right, once it’s folded and pined, the edge should form a curved edge. Also, the inside folds should look like a “V” and the outside should have two straight pleats.
- Work your way around to form 4 sets of two pleats, one for each side and one for the front and back of cap. Once all 4 sets are pinned, your cap top should form a nice bowl like so, making sure the wrong side of your fabric is the inside of the bowl:
- Baste around the cap to keep pleats in place. I usually baste all the pleats except two. These two will be in the back of the cap and are loose so I can make any needed adjustments to fit the top of the cap perfectly into band. (Also, if you are making a different size cap, you may want to pin your cap onto the band before basting to check the fit. You may need to adjust all the pleats if it’s way off.)
12. Now, baste the top of cap to the inside finished edge of the band, but be sure that the front pleat is lined up with the middle of the bill or else it will look funky if it’s off.
Start sewing in the front of the cap and work around in each direction ending at the back seams. This is when you may need to do some adjusting of the back pleats to fit your cap top into your band.
13. Once everything fits good and there’s no puckering, fold over outside band and topstitch all layers with the outside band on top.
Try to stay as close to the top edge was possible while neatly sewing the inside band in place as well. (This is where things can get a little hard to keep in place if you’re not using a Walking Foot. Go slowly and watch your layers.)
14. Check all your seams for any puckering or missed edges and try it on.
15. And finally, find a comfy spot to sit, get your sharp seam ripper, and take out the basting stitches on the inside of the cap.
TA-DA, You are done!
Now take a picture of your cutie in his (or her) cap and post it on Flickr’s “Eddie Cap” group for all of us to admire.
Please let me know if you have any questions or if I need to clarify any steps.