We decided to dress up like Nintendo characters for a music video, so we needed a mushroom hat so that our drummer could be Toad. This project only took a few hours and was all created with stuff we already had lying around in closets, unused. The perfect project to compliment your spring cleaning!
Step 1: Gather Materials
Materials we used:
- A cowboy hat: we used an old straw one I had lying around
- A large sheet of cardboard: dependant on how large you'd like the hat to be. Thicker is better, as it will provide much needed stability.
- Red and white fabric: we used old t-shirts originally, but ended up commandeering a white linen pillowcase for a more professional look, though this isn't totally necessary. White t-shirts without too much logo would also do.
- Strips of foam: (not pictured here) to provide the structure of the sides of the hat
- Plastic grocery bags: used for stuffing the hat
Tools: (Nothing major)
- Exacto knife
- Fabric glue
Step 2: The Base
Use a large circular object or a makeshift compass to trace a large circle on your sheet of cardboard, and then some robust scissors to cut it out. Next, in the centre, cut a hole roughly the size of the inside of your cowboy hat. You'll want some good, thick cardboard. As you can see, we got ours from the box of an older monitor that I don't intend to ship anywhere any more...
Step 3: Secure the Cowboy Hat
We used some painters' tape to secure the hat to the base... although it didn't work very well. I would recommend stronger tape, especially if you don't mind losing your hat to the project indefinitely. It's not overly secure at the moment, but we'll fix that in later steps.
Step 4: Start Forming the Outside
Now we used that foam I mentioned to make the outer wall of the hat. First we laid it down with tape, then stapled the edges to the rim of the had.
Step 5: Form the Top
We had just one strip of leftover foam after forming the outer walls, so we draped it across the middle and stapled it to the foam circle.
Step 6: Stuff and Support
Here is where we bust out our grocery bags and stuff the hat, and then use some strips of cloth stretched from either sides of the outer wall to create the dome on the top. This will also help turn our straight outer walls into a more rounded shape.
Step 7: Start Upholstering
Now we can take our old t-shirts and stretch them across the dome we've created, stapling them at the bottom. We're taking care here not to leave wrinkles, but we're going to cover the hat again, so it doesn't have to be perfect. Plus, we found that the t-shirt fabric didn't make for the most professional-looking finished product.
Step 8: Recover (optional But Recommended)
Now we use a large sheet of linen (about 4 feet by 4 feet) to recover the hat again. Place the hat in the center and stretch the linen to the edges of the hat, then staple them near the opening in the centre. Then you can trim the edges of fabric that overlap the hole. The lines and folds of the creases will actually end up looking good in the end, so don't worry too much about them.
Step 9: Glue Your Red Dots - and Enjoy!
Sorry, we were too excited to take photos for the last step, but basically we used a bowl to trace circles on our red t-shirts, cut them out with scissors, and used fabric glue around the edges to glue them to our hat. That's it! Now you're ready to be a huge Nintendo Nerd with all of your favourite buddies.