Instant Hat and Scarf From Airline Blanket





Introduction: Instant Hat and Scarf From Airline Blanket

About: Tim Anderson is the author of the "Heirloom Technology" column in Make Magazine. He is co-founder of, manufacturers of "3D Printer" output devices. His detailed drawings of traditional Pacific...

Make a warm scarf and hat from an airline blanket in less than a minute.
No sewing necessary. The only tool you need is a pair of scissors.
Or if the airline takes yours, I suppose you could use a piece of broken wine bottle to do the cutting.

Mitch and I sporting our spiffy warm new duds.

Step 1: Cut the Blanket

Cut the blanket in half the long way.
If scissors, knife, or broken wine bottle aren't options, here's another method:
Lay it on pavement and bang and scrape with a rock until it's mostly cut through, then rip it.

Step 2: Scarf!

You now have a scarf!
Wear it with pride.
Maybe it'll help you get over a flu you caught on an airplane.

For a festive fringe, cut the ends like these scarves made from left-over fleece at a San Francisco fabric shop.

Step 3: Hat - 1st Step.

Cut a strip of cloth from one end of the remaining piece of blanket.
You'll use it later to tie the top of the hat shut.
Any strip of cloth, ribbon, or string works just as well if you prefer not to cut the end of your blanket, or if you don't care about matching the fabric.

Step 4: Roll

Wrap the cloth around your head until you run out.
Rolling your head on the floor gives you a better wrap than doing it standing up.
And it's more fun. And you get to find out what falls out of your pockets when you do that.

Step 5: Spiral Roll

If you want to do a really good job, roll it like this so the inner layers protrude a little at the bottom.
Then when you do the following step and roll the cuff, it will stay put and look a lot neater.

Step 6: Cuff

Roll the lower edge over twice.
That keeps the edge from coming unravelled.
The blanket cloth likes to grip itself pretty well.

If rolling the cuff makes it too tight on your head, unwrap and wrap it again more loosely.

Step 7: Tie the Top

Use the strip of cloth you cut earlier to tie the top of your hat

Step 8: Tassel

Wear your hat as is, or if you want to get fancy, cut the top into a tassel.

Step 9: Wear It Well

Enjoy your fine warm new garb!

I can't seem to keep a stocking cap for more than a few days without losing it.
Now I can make one whenever I need it!

And the scarf will definitely match!



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    20 Discussions

    yeah you can have scissors and alot of stuff that could cut it on airplanes. you can even have lighters! lol

    1 reply

    you said that you feel safer because handguns are illegal. what about for self defense? "Oh well if they are illegal than criminals can't get them right?" Wrong if a criminal is going to be trying to shoot you i 1 dought that he would care if it was illegal and 2 would have purchased through othor criminals (ie the black market) and also i am never moving to canada (because of the crazy laws and also because it's so darn chilly!)

    Would it be possible to tie the top of the hat shut inside of it to make a beanie/hat without the tassel?

    This seems reasonable for those airlines where you actually have to pay for your blanket and take it with you. Otherwise, aren't you stealing the airline's blanket that they were nice enough to lend to you to provide comfort on your flight?

    1 reply

    Quite mad but effective. I am the proud owner of a sewing machine, would it be allowed to sew the hat :)

    but with a needle and thread, you could make a slightly more sturdy beanie hdbdhbjs 

    Hehe, thats priceless! With nedle and thread you could have made a whole collection of uglydolls during an internation flight. I suppose you would get banned from the airline forever. but TOTALLY worth it! m.

    Awesome! When the group I am a part of flies to Zambia in August 2009, we will lay claim to all of our blankets and any others that are left behind. Then we will proceed to make hats and scarves for the people of Zambia that we are there to minister to. Believe it or not, it is cold enough for a scarf or hat in Zambia during the month of August (at least in the wee hours of the mornings it is).

    Awesome. Super stylin' chaps. You boys aren't regular marijuana users by any chance?

    lol i just want to laugh at the hat making process, but the truth is im probably going to make it on a plane one day to show off

    Really nice. And it is so handy for those homeless guys flying with major air carriers. Seriously, though, very innovative. Now can you show how to make a last-minute tux using the same material?

    1 reply

    hey, this would have been handy to have had before I flew into IDAHO last time. the weather had turned abruptly and kinda sucked. I had no hat. I had no scarf. but I could have... :(

    or you could cut it in half (width-wise) and make two furoshikis...80)

    Absolutely great! But, er,... which airline would I have to fly to get one in chocolate brown to match my new shoes?

    Awesome job! :P And Mitch has a very nice Instructables Robot T-shirt (they're all the same), I wish I had one... Nice job!