DIY Surgical/Scrub Hat





Introduction: DIY Surgical/Scrub Hat

About: Sometimes I just get the urge to create something fun :)

Working in the OR, I always see doctors and nurses walking around wearing cute scrub hats. So not wanting to wear those stupid looking blue disposable ones, I looked into purchasing a few. After seeing the outrageous prices some companies were charging, I set out to make my own. Challenge accepted. I couldn't find a decent *free* pattern online so I ended up just creating my own.


Supplies needed:

- 1/3 yd of Main Fabric of your choosing. (If 44 inches wide, should be enough for both pieces)
- Accent Fabric (or scrap fabric) that is at least 8 1/2 by 11 inches
- 1/2 inch wide Elastic Band
- Ruler and/or Measuring Tape
- Pins
- Scissors
- Sewing Machine and Thread (matching your fabric)
- Iron/Ironing Board

Step 1: Step 1: Cutting the Fabric

You will need to cut out two pieces of fabric. One of for the main body of the hat and one for the top. (Use the iron to help flatten out the kinks and folds in the fabric before cutting.)

For the main body of the hat, cut a rectangular piece of fabric with the dimensions 12 x 30 inches. 

For the top of the hat, I created a pattern using one 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper. Just make sure that one end of the fabric is flat. A sample of what it should look like is included. 

Step 2: Step 2: Sewing

Main body fabric = MainF
Top fabric = TopF
**Sew all edges with 1/4 inch seam**

A. Take MainF and fold it hot dog style with the wrong sides touching. Using the iron, flatten the fold along the bottom. Flipping the fabric inside out, sew along the two ends of the fabric, leaving the top open. After sewing the ends closed, flip the fabric right side out again. Iron the ends flat.

B. Take the closed end of MainF and create an 1 1/2 inch flap. Iron the fold. 

C. Create an overlap with the two ends of about 2 1/2 inches. Sew both ends down. 

D. With the fold facing the outside, fold MainF in half with the thick end on the left. Fold TopF in half with the flat portion facing towards you. Line up the two fabrics right sides together. Pin together along the edge of the entire hat, leaving the flat portion of TopF unpinned.

E. This is the trickiest part. When you get to the flat portion of the fabric, pin the middle of TopF to the middle of thick portion of MainF. Flag the extra fabric and sew this extra portion down. If confused, please refer to the pictures. I tried to provide as much help as possible. 

F. Sew MainF and TopF together leaving an 1/4 seam along the edge. 

Step 3: Step 3: Adding the Elastic Band

After sewing the two portions together, flip the hat. The folded flap should be on the outside now. 

Cut about a 6 inch long piece of elastic band. Start with either the left or right side of the thick portion of the hat. About 4 inches from the edge, sew the elastic down on the inside of the flap. Sew down the flap to the fold and along the edge to the other side. Close up the gap by sewing down the other end of elastic 4 inches from the other side. After releasing the hat, it should scrunch together. 

Note: If you feel the hat is still too loose, you can either shorten the length of the elastic or sew further out from the middle of the hat.

Step 4: Step 4: Reaping the Compliments

Final outcome: One Awesome looking surgical/scrub cap modeled by my good friend Totoro! Great for work, halloween costumes, christmas gifts, cooking, shower cap, etc...

Good luck! I would love to know how your scrub hats turn out :D

I'm working on a men's version of the hat. Will post up if any interest. Thanks for looking!



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23 Discussions

Hi Wildcat03,

Do you have a men's version of the hat? Thank you

Hi Wildcat03,

Can you tell me what "flag your fabric" means? I've been sewing for a long time but have never heard that term used before now. I'm almost finished☘️

1 reply

Sort of like pinching out an extra flap (triangle flag shape) with the fabric, then folding it down to either side and sewing over all the layers. Does this help clear things up a bit?

It is a little big but can adjust that. Glad to have the pattern. Thank you.

1 reply

It's more of a guideline so it's adjustable for your own custom fit. Especially with the elastic to help tighten it up. Hope they turned out well.

I am having a problem getting it to download any thoughts?

1 reply

May need a premium account to download the content. The pattern itself isn't hard to make. You only need two pieces of fabric. The larger piece should measure 12 inches by 30 inches. The smaller piece: take a sheet of regular paper (8.5 x 11), fold it in half, draw a curved line to make the head shape. When you unfold the paper, it should be symmetrical. Just make sure that one end of the oval is flat and the other end is curved. See picture for example. Hope this helps.

I love this and would love a male version of this hat. Is the male version much different? If I sign up for pro will I be able to download actual pattern pieces or will I have to create my own either way? Thanks again!

great idea!!! will whip mine up too, I do areola tattoos after mastectomy, and I hate the paper bouffant caps! thanks for the pattern!!

I am so excited I found your surgical scrub hat! And was
wanting to make one for my brother in law.. I saw at the end of the post
you said that you were working on a male size/version... was wondering
if you had ever finished it...or if you could guide me as to what I
would have to change to make this one work for a man

1 reply

I, too, am interested in a male-sized version of the pattern to personally sport around the hospital where I work. The circumference I would need is exactly 22 inches. (Had I any experience sewing, I'm sure the necessary adjustments would be super obvious; however, I haven't sewn since my 8th grade home ec class.) I'm also interested in making them with bamboo fabric, for its thermal-regulating properties, as the disposable caps are less than useless in this regard. Any updates would be appreciated! Thanks.

I believe you can just download the PDF in the top corner under the instructable title and print it out that way.

Love your scrub. I was looking for a child's pattern for my Grandson who loves to play Dr. Do you have a small scale size. Thank you.

OK, so this is old news for everyone but me. Thank you for the fantastic pattern and my bestie (OR nurse in Portland, Orrygun) is completely PSYCHED. Now I'm the hero, thanks to you. Which makes you awesome-er.

Nice tutorial. Could you possibly post a pic of you (or another person) wearing the hat so I can get an idea of how it looks on a real person? Totoro is really cute but it is hard to tell about how it will fit on a human head. THANKS!

1 reply

Nice work. I'll have to pass this along to my wife. She is an L & D nurse and likes to wear fun hats in the OR.