Sorting Hat

Intro: Sorting Hat

Here's an easy sorting hat DIY that anyone can do!


You'll also need to download my free templates available below. I am not referring to the instructables PDF (which requires a paid subscription). You want to download the .zip file.


Once you have all the supplies SORTED out... lets move on to the next step!

Step 1: Video Tutorial

Watch the video tutorial or continue through the written instructions.

Step 2: Shaping the Hat

This is the easiest part. Just cut the shape of the rim of the hat into a large piece of cardboard. Then cut a paper bag into a long flat piece of paper and roll it into a cone. Tape it to hold it together. The cone part should fit into the rim to make the basic shape of the sorting hat.

TIP: Use images of the hat for reference and make sure you make it the right size so it can be worn.

Step 3: Making the Face

Drape the cloth over your hat shape to eyeball where the face should be. Use reference images of the face of the hat to sort of draw the face with your glue gun on the back side of your leather fabric and fold it in on itself to shape the face. Start with the brow line and then do the mouth. If you'd like, you can glue a few cotton balls on the back side of the fabric where the nose would be in order to make it bulge out a little bit.

Step 4: Coving the Hat With Cloth

Now drape the cloth over your hat again and align the face where it should be. Start hot-gluing the fabric to cover the cone of the hat first. You can leave this slightly loose, but make sure it maintains a cone shape. Trim off the excess but leave overlap where the cone meets the rim and also at the top of the cone so that the point of the hat can droop.

Hot-glue the extra fabric where the cone meets the rim, onto the rim of the hat. Now cut off random pieces of your leather fabric and hot-glue that to cover the entire top of the hat's rim. Allow a few inches of fabric to extend beyond the rim of the hat. You'll then want to fold the excess fabric around to the bottom of the hat's rim and glue it down.

You can also cut out a few squares of fabric in varied sizes to glue to the rim to make it look patched up. Also, cut off a long strip of fabric to tie around the base of the hat. You'll want to check out some reference images of the sorting hat to get the right idea.

Use fabric from either a black or brown shirt to cover the opening on the bottom of the hat where you would wear it. The fabric needs to go into the hat far enough for the top of your head to fit, but not all the way to the tip of the cone. Now cut random pieces from the leather fabric again and glue them to the bottom of the rim, covering up any visible cardboard.

Step 5: Making the House Labels

Print out the house label templates, double-sided, on plain white printer paper. Tear them each into their own label. You can then crumple them up and flatten them back out to make them look more like old parchment. Another idea is to burn the edges of the labels.

Now you can put the labels in the hat, mix them up, and pass it around so your party guests can pick a random label from the hat to get sorted.

Step 6: You're Finished!

That's it! You're all done!

Please let me know what you think and share your creations in the comments below!

Thanks for viewing!

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    5 Discussions


    Question 24 days ago

    Where can I find the link to the free templates?


    Question 2 months ago on Introduction

    Hi, I was wondering where is the link to download the free templates?


    Question 3 months ago on Step 6

    were is the link for the free templates?


    Question 7 months ago on Step 6

    Hello! I have looked at several tutorials for making a sorting hat (I need one for my HP themed sweet 16!) and was not enthused by the idea of paper mache. Your tutorial is AMAZING and I absolutely LOVE how it turned out. Could you let me know how much of the faux leather you used? I am preparing to order it from amazon (the same fabric you linked) however I don't know if I should order one yard or two. If you could answer this question that would be greatly appreciated!!

    Thank you so much!!

    -Kaiya A.

    Of Gryffindor;)