Introduction: Fascinator

About: When things don't go the way I want, I still hear my father say: ‘There is no such word as can’t.’ The things I make, I make thanks to him. He taught me how to bake and paint and everything in between, I got h…
After the paperbag: the fascinator.
I love hats as well as bags. A fascinator is not really a hat. A hat sits around the head and a fascinator sits on the head and is held in place by a hair clip, diadem, comb or hat elastic. A fascinator is easy to make. You don't need a head size, one size fits all. There are many options: heart shape, round, star shape, teardrop. In fact, everything is possible, although I would not go for square, the only limitation is that it has to fit the shape of the face. The most classic ones are round and teardrop.

You can buy special hat wire and buckram, a stiff fabric, but it is not necessary. Both are easy to replace. The only thing you need is a piece of sturdy fabric, corn starch, iron wire, solder and Leukosilk (Leukosilk is a fixation plaster tape) or another small tape, as long as it is not plastic.


Iron wire or craft wire, 16 ga
Solder wire
Soldering grease
Soldering iron
Extra hands
Paper for pattern
Corn starch
Quarter cup spoon
Sturdy fabric, 20x20 cm is enough
Flexible fabric, preferably full stretch but at least for the bottom, 2x 20x20 cm
Extra strong yarn
Ironing board
Styrofoam wig head or styrofoam ball
Bias strip
Scraps of fabric, beads, feathers, silk flowers, lace or whatever you want to use for decoration
Attachment for in the hair: clip, comb, diadem or hat elastic

Step 1: Getting Started

I started collecting material that I possibly wanted on the fascinator. Based on what I had, I chose a model.
In this case, I chose the teardrop model. I drew the pattern for this three times in three different sizes and finally opted for a teardrop in the middle with a diameter of 15 cm and a diameter of 10 cm at the widest point.

Step 2: Homemade ‘buckram’

Cut the pattern once, without seam, from sturdy fabric; choose heavy linen or cotton for this. I used heavy cotton, this will be the basis.
Now measure 1/4 cup of water and dissolve two tablespoons of corn starch in it. Stir with a whisk until all the corn starch has dissolved and there are no lumps left in it. Once the corn starch is completely dissolved, add 2x a quarter cup of water.

Heat this mixture until the milky color changes to glassy. Turn off the heat and let cool to a temperature at which you do not burn your hands. Now dip the base in the corn starch and knead until the corn starch is in the cotton. Squeeze out and wipe away the excess corn starch. Spread the base between a tea towel and iron till almost dry. Spell the base on a styrofoam ball or wig head with four pins and let it dry completely. After drying you have a hard curved base.

Step 3: Make a Ring of Iron Wire

Make a ring of iron wire in the shape of the base, in this case a teardrop. I use the pattern to measure the wire and bend it into the right shape. I had no iron wire but craft wire for jewelry works too. Take a fairly strong thickness, I use 16 gauge. Once the ring has the right shape, place it in 'extra hands' and turn the crocodile jaws so that the ends are touching each other. Put some solder grease on the ends and solder with solder wire. For extra strength, tape the shape all around with Leukosilk.

Step 4: Cover the Top of the Base

Cut the desired fabric, preferably a fabric that doesn't fray and otherwise zigzag before you fix it to the base, and secure it to the base with a small basting stitch.
Place the base in the teardrop ring.
Bend the ring over the styrofoam ball or wig head so that it has the same shape as the base. Now secure the base with the top cover in the ring, do this with an overhand stitch or blanket stitch use the the extra strong yarn for this.

Step 5: Turn on the Bias Strip and the Bottom Part

Bias strip is a band of fabric folded in three, a wider center piece with two flaps folded inwards. Place the bias strip with one of the flaps towards the iron ring with the right side of the bias strip down, start in the middle on the side opposite the point and stitch the tape with small stitching stitches.

Cut the pattern again from stretchy fabric. Sew the fabric at half the bottom. Do this by securing the fabric at the top under the bias band flap. Use small basting stitches for this. I already fix half the bottom because it is difficult to fix the bottom after sewing the composition. By already doing half of it, I can still fix the composition without suffocating through the bottom fabric and I reduce the difficult work to half. The bias strip is the last to be finished.

Step 6: Creating and Placing the Composition

Arrange the flowers, ribbon, lace or whatever you want to use to make a whole that fits on the teardrop (or other model). Some parts may already be put together before you sew it on the fascinator. For example, I have attached the flowers and feathers to each other in advance. I did this with Leukosilk. Because Leukosilk is white and the background is black, I colored the Leukosilk black with a waterproof marker. Then I made a fan out of black lace, you do this by stringing yarn through the bottom and pulling it into a fan. Then sew. For the finishing touch I have set up a freshwater pearl. Do not cut the yarn, with this yarn you can secure the lace on the fascinator. Now fix the composition on the fascinator, but be careful not to go through the stretch fabric on the bottom.

Step 7: Finish

Decide for yourself what kind of attachment you want to use. If you have straight hair just like me, go for elastic or diadem. If you have thick hair, you can also choose a clip or comb. I'm going for hat elastic. Measure an appropriate amount of elastic and tie a double knot at both ends.
Now fix the remaining part of the bottom, pull it over the iron wire like the first half and secure under the bias band flap.
Decide where you want the elastic and sew the bias strip with small stitches to the stretch fabric.
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