Introduction: Burton's Mad Hatter Hat

Picture of Burton's Mad Hatter Hat

This are instructions to make the Mad Hatter Hat from the new Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland

Step 1: Cardboard Box

Picture of Cardboard Box

The size of the cardboard will be the measurement of your head, remember to add half to one extra inch of size so that it can fit over the wig.
How tall you want it is up to you, I made it the size of my head and a half, after this cut strips about an inch or 2 apart. DO NOT go all the way through the cardboard except on the bottom and top tabs that will be used to glue the top and the visor.

Step 2: Make Cylinder

Picture of Make Cylinder

Fold it and tape from the inside so that you end up with a cylinder, you will get a good idea of how tall it will be from here, just remember you will loose about 2-3 inches when you expand it.

Step 3: Make Expansion

Picture of Make Expansion

Once  you have it taped cut through the strips to a little more than half way down the hat, then bend each strip outwards so that you end up with something like this.

Step 4: Top Part and Visor

Picture of Top Part and Visor

Cut a large circle, this circle will give your hat its size on the top, to measure according. Cut 2 of this circles, one will serve of that expansion the other as the main cover. Then using the cylinder trace the circle to be cut out of the visor part, draw another circle the same size as the top circles and draw the sides so that it has an oval shape you should end up with this.
NOTE: Use the circle and trace the pattern on the cloth that will be used to cover the hat, do the same with the visor, but trace it twice, one for the top part  and one for the bottom. You should do this now because it will be very hard to do this once the hat is assembled.  

Step 5: Glue Visor

Picture of Glue Visor

To put it together  insert the hat into the visor and then just fold the tabs and glue on the bottom using hot glue sticks.

Step 6: Top Part

Picture of Top Part

The circle for the top should hold by itself right where the tabs fold, inserting the top part will give your hat the expanded look, now just glue the tabs on preferably by gluing one then its opposite counterpart. This will help keep your top centered.

Step 7: Almost Done (not Really)

Picture of Almost Done (not Really)

Once this is done glue your second top circle on top so that it will cover the tabs and it will give the top of your hat a smooth look.
Now take your hat and using a water bottle wet the edges of the visor, wait till it is completely wet and fold upwards, use something heavy to keep the folds in place and wait until it has completely dried, this way you will get the folded edges look of the hat.

Step 8: Cloth

Picture of Cloth

Buy a green patterned cloth of your choice, first glue the top circle that you all ready cut, glue the excess to the sides of the hat. For the body of the hat cut your cloth into strips then into squares and glue one by one. I found out using a prit stick worked best and it is less messy. After this is done glue the bottom part of the visor folding the excess onto the top of the visor, then glue the top and then just trim, Wrap a salmon colored scarf to the hat it should hang down all the way to the back.

Step 9: Details

Picture of Details

Glue buttons onto coat hangers and stick them into the hat, I also glued some feathers to the other side and finally add the 10/6 card and you are done (the 10/6 is the price of the hat by the way)
Now you have the hat on the last step you will see my whole costume and I'll tell you about the clothing.

Step 10: Complete Costume

Picture of Complete Costume

For the rest of the costume I got everything from a thrift store, brown coat, colorful vest, salmon shirt, black with bright accents scarf/bow, striped pants and extra scarfs to pin to the coat. I used about 24 thread spools that are held together with yarn to make the "bullet belt" on the chest and the wig is a regular orange clown afro wig that I straightened with a  regular hair straightener, and that is it.
Good Luck and remember Why is a raven like a writers desk?

Because Poe wrote on both


KathyB232 made it! (author)2017-05-05

This was really fun to make. I used green felt and spray adhesive for the fabric. I made it larger, and cut an opening in the top so it can be used for a card holder for an Alice in Wonderland themed baby shower.

F0XDR4G0N made it! (author)2017-04-10

Loved making the mad hatter hat. very good instructions. had to tweak my just a bit but liked the results.

cbryant914 (author)2017-04-06

I'm not understanding the fabric instructions someone please help??

Badia (author)cbryant9142017-04-06

Basically the rim you just cut the fabric the same shape, leave the top part for the rim a bit longer so you can wrap it around to cover the edge.
The top part same indication, the sides are strips, about an inch and a half thick, overlap them around the body of the top hat, flip them on the top and then put on the top fabric part.

PhillipS54 (author)2016-06-11

Thank you for putting this tutorial together. I used your great idea and turned it into a card box for my niece's graduation party. I added all sorts of things, from a large Queen of Hearts card with accompanying playing cards to a toy tea set and a pocket watch. She loves Alice in Wonderland, and thinks I'm the greatest uncle in the world. She loved it! Thanks, Badia.

cbryant914 (author)PhillipS542017-04-06

that's awesome I was thinking the same thing! I planning a sweet 16 party for my daughter end of april and theme is alice in wonderland I want to turn the mad hatter hat into a card box could you share any ideas on how big you chose to go? to ensure cards fit? thank you

MargarethB (author)2017-02-28

Parabéns e obrigada por me ensinar a fazer esse maravilhoso chapéu!!!!

Mickey M (author)2015-10-27

Thank you so much for this tutorial. For this Halloween I am going to be the Mad Hatter, and I didn't want to spend a ton of money for a costume. This saved me budget wise.

cara.bella.353 (author)2015-04-17

decided to make this for my drama assignment...any tips on approx. how much fabric I would need?

ACleanSweepLlc (author)2015-01-13

Your tutorial is nicely laid out and came in handy for a costume horse event last Haloween. We won First prize, of course. I had to improvise a bit and build the hat around my helmet. It was quite large but came out great. Thank you!!!

kporter9 made it! (author)2014-10-04

I had my grade school students in my costuming club make these hats. We substituted duct tape for the fabric. Your instructions were easy to follow. The kids had a great time making their "mad hatter" hats.

fairyartdolls (author)2014-09-15

I made a Mad Hatter themed Easter Bonnet. It won first prize whoop ! Thanks for the tutorial xxx

sohaila (author)2014-02-26

i used it for my Drama exam!!! thank you so much

CompGeekie (author)2013-10-21

Awesome! My friend is going as a Mad hatter, and she was planning on making her hat today, too bad I can't tell her about this I'ble till tomorrow... Still awesome though!

Badia (author)CompGeekie2013-10-22

Its amazing that my craft is still helping people after so many years, cheers!!!

CompGeekie (author)2013-10-22

Ha ah! I AM making her hat! This hat is going to be awesome!

alex7315 (author)2012-10-20

Thank you so much for this tutorial :) it helped me a great deal...I am very satisfied with the outcome, however I am a little bit nervous about its weight - it is quite heavy, so I probably won't be able to wear it for the whole evening :D I guess I used too much glue and heavy fabric. It does not matter really, because I am still so pleased that I made something I would never believe I could manage. Thank you :)

andiclara (author)2012-09-28

A few years ago the hospital where my husband works had a competition for Melbourne Cup day where you had to make a hat using the sterile wrap that they use to wrap instruments for the operating theater. My husband gave me one days notice, and this is what I came up with. The instructions were so clear and easy to follow. I glued the strips of wrap on using a hot glue gun and quickly made up a few fabric roses to go along with the hat pins and price tag. My husband won first prize, and afterwards my nephews had a lot of fun playing with the hat. I was amazed at how long it kept its shape! The boys used it for performing magic tricks (making toy rabbits appear) they sat on it, used it as a table etc. The imagination of a 3 year old is endless! Anyway, my youngest nephew is I think 6 months old here and you could not ask for a cuter model. Thank you for such a comprehensive instructable, I had so much fun making it.

Badia (author)andiclara2012-09-28

That is just amazing. I never thought when I made this hat that it would bring so much joy, and fun and well Im just dumbfounded at how many people comment and how much this instructable has been able to help people keep on feeding their imagination, so glad it helped you, and the hat looks great, cheers,

andiclara (author)Badia2012-09-28

Oh wow! You are a total inspiration! Look at all the amazing hats that people have made from your design! I don't think anyone had as much fun with the hat as my two little nephews did though. I seriously could not believe how long the hat lasted. The boys did their best, but they just could not destroy the hat! And all that comes down to your construction method.

Um... any hints on what hat I can make for this years Melbourne Cup Day Competition anyone?

Mauigerbil (author)2012-08-24

"Costume"? Why not EVERY DAY!?!?!

toberah (author)2012-05-01

Thank you for this! I just finished one for my daughter's "Mad Hatter Tea Party" for her birthday. I glued some quilt batting over the cardboard to smooth it out since my fabric was thin and stretchy. It came out great!

henry209 (author)2012-03-31

This is what my hat ended up looking like. I really like it. It's sitting on a shelf in my room.

SeaDemon (author)2012-03-28

I made it, Took like 4 days.... _ _l|l Its cool though! but...... I made it for my Friend and I miss it. TT TT
I made it too small for him so hopefully....... He'll give it back to me because it'll keep falling off!!! =D I made it to my size too it fits nicely. =D

YoshiB (author)2011-01-25

thank-you so much for the inspiration! I made this the night before Melbourne cup day at school(I won best hat by the way). Here are the results!
p.s. found the peacock feathers after the day but thought they looked great. my photo in the local paper for it ! (even though i never got my promised prize..) thanks a bunch!

Izaboo (author)YoshiB2012-03-05

I made the hat for Melbourne cup day as well! For my husband's work, and he won first prize too!

Badia (author)YoshiB2011-01-26

Conrats luv, looks amazing, keep those skills working always ok, maybe one day you'll show me how to make something

Kerushii (author)2012-02-01

here me and my top hat >.<

Kerushii (author)2012-02-01

I tried v.v

kittikuti94 (author)2012-01-01

alright i'm sort of a blond XD you say NOT to cut through the cardboard EXCEPT the bottom........but it says that you cut strips through the whole thing?!?! Please explain this step to me. As detailed as possible!

Badia (author)kittikuti942012-01-02

Cardboard is made is two layers of well, cardboard, and in between this layers there's a ruffled cardboard part, when I say dont cut all the way though, I mean that you should only cut through one layer and a bit of the middle part, this makes it able for the cardboard to "fold" but stay in one piece, hope it helps

blundell (author)2011-10-28

Yayy took 3 nights (waiting for glue to dry inbetween). Built it too tall to start with, an it's slightly small for my head so added a strap! If I was doing it again the main point to remember is, put the cloth on so all the seems are around the middle (as this will be hidden by the scalf!)

sammysaammmy (author)blundell2011-11-23

Hahahah I'm glad I'm not the only one that took a picture wearing the cardboard. ;)

Tanz27 (author)2011-11-19

I made mine 13 inches tall, with 13 inch diameter top and visor; and it looks great. Oh, and tips up to everyone having trouble with the fabric. I had a nightmare, Plan c was strech crushed Velvet. make a sleeve the same diameter as the thinest bit then stretch over the lot. Chop the excess sleeve from the top, then add your top circle of fabric. This also eliminates the need for seperate fabric for top & bottom of the visor, as you can strech it all the way over. Make sure the thickness is reasonable & should be great. Picture to follow!.

Thanks for the fab instructable!

sbeard4 (author)2011-10-28

I am having a seriously difficult time with the top. how big should it be? its kinda pissin me off actually, heeeeeelp!!!!!

Badia (author)sbeard42011-10-28

I made it the size of the visor, only the visor is oval the top would be round, in any case it can be any size you want , cheers

fbaker (author)2011-10-26

Wonderful job, it just goes to show there is everything you ever need on the net.
Thanks so much for this "how to" - mine ended up a bit too tall but it still turned out great.

jmarshall16 (author)2011-10-25

I'm in a production of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and for the Halloween show, we all dress up as characters from other stories. I play Riff Raff and decided to dress up as Mad Hatter. I was having trouble finding a hat for a reasonable price, and then stumbled upon this. I gave the hat my own spin, and I couldn't have done this without this page. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

zombie1212 (author)2011-10-15

That is probaly the best halloween idea ever. I AM TOTALLY USNG THAT

jorange1 (author)2011-09-04

Fantastic instructable! I'm looking forward to making this hat for my Mad Tea Partty in a couple of weeks.
Great solution to the riddle (big fan of Poe), however, I have to say that Lewis Carroll said, in 1896, that the solution to the riddle is "because it can produce a few notes, though they are very flat; and it is nevar put with the wrong end in front"
He also reminds us that it was an after thought and the riddle was not supposed to have a solution.

Sawowie XD (author)2011-08-31

i loved this hat, and great instructable. i made one using this for my friends 18th birthday, i had great fun making it. i havent given it to her yet but i cant wait XD

krobinson4 (author)2011-07-08

Your idea is awesome!! My boyfriend and I got invited to a costume party, Im going as teeb alice and hes going as teen hatter. Im making my costume and his. Would you mind if I used you design to make his hat?

Badia (author)krobinson42011-07-09

Why would I mind? Have at it, enjoy and good luck cheers

rwilson10 (author)2011-06-06

Love it!! Making a small one for my puppy :D Too Cute. Hope to get a pic uploaded.

Thanks for the instructions. It's simple, easy and looks great.

amandagraves (author)2011-04-01

I made this hat in about 3 hours in total - not allowing for the drying time of the curved visor from your instructions. Very well thought out - It Won FIRST PRIZE at my son's Schools Mad Hatters Tea Party today, everyone thought it was Awesome - THANKS - sorry we can't share the wine with you that we won!

Badia (author)amandagraves2011-04-02

Cheers, and enjoy the wine, glad I could be of service

McChibster (author)2011-02-06

Great instructable! It took me exactly 3 days to construct this beauty, and only spent 8 dollars!
I won most creative costume at our halloween dance. So thanks!
Although, I do wish you might've included a little instruction on exactly how to get the fabric on the cardboard frame... I had much difficutly trying to figure that out. :D

LacieDee (author)2010-05-09

Okay, I'm preparing for my play in High School in drama, and I'm making this hat for part of my costume. Do I make two visors, like, a Top and Bottom?
Be very specific and detailed with your reply please? I don't want to mess up on this and get a bad grade for a sloppy mess of a hat. =[

Badia (author)LacieDee2010-05-10

HAHAHA oi, Ill try to be as precise and specific as I can, The visor y is just one part, you fit it thourh the botom and then fold the tabs from the body of the hat and glu them on on the bottom, there is a picture of the hat from underneath you can see the tabs glued there, what you WILL NEED 2 pieces of is the cloth that will cover the visor, so trace two of these, the one on the bottom will cover the tabs, glue this one on first, then glue the one on top, you can make a cut on it so that you can place it on top of the visor which should already be glued on the hat by the time you go on to covering it with the cloth

badideasrus (author)Badia2010-12-28

wouldn't it be easyer to just glue the top cloth on before you glue on the brim? then glue one the brim the to tabs and then glue one the bottom piece?

that way, all the cloth stays intact

About This Instructable




Bio: Born and raised in Juarez México I have a degree in visual arts and have been involved in the scene for years now, I love ... More »
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