Saturday, April 7, 2012

Mad Hatter Hats, Guest Author J. Fischer

A special welcome today to my latest guest author...... with an idea that would be awesome in time for Easter bonnet parade this weekend. Many thanks to Jennifer for sharing such fun! I'm so grateful for your ideas!! -- Debbie --

Every time I’ve seen these Crazy Hats being made, it has been a huge hit. A friend of mine did a Crazy Hat booth at a major city event and the booth always had the longest line. When they decided to change up events, and she offered to give me the materials they had left, I quickly accepted.

When I ran an After-School program, we used this activity as the featured activity at an Alice in Wonderland fundraising carnival we did to raise funds for clean water in Burkina Faso (a small country in Africa). Crazy Hats became Mad Hatter Hats! Once again, huge hit!!

(Note: if you are doing these with large numbers of children at a program or party, make sure you have enough adult helpers as glue guns are required). My 4th-6th graders really loved it.

Directions for making Mad Hatter Hats:

Materials (per hat):

1. Brown paper bag (size: 12x7x17" – you can order them at, but we just got them from grocery stores for free)

2. 22" x 22" square fabric (to cover full hat)*

3. 2" x 60" long fabric (to wrap around edge of hat)*

4. Hot glue and glue guns

5. Fun trinkets to attach to the hats (I found incomplete decks of cards as one of the trinket add-ons, these were really popular)

Hat Making Directions:

1. Take brown paper bag and roll the bottom upwards (on the outside of bag)

2. Square fabric goes over the rolled paper bag (while bag is on patrons head)

3. Long fabric gets tied around the edge (just above the roll) to fit the head size (many of the girls enjoyed braided the fabric to make pretty strips for tying around0

4. Take hat off, turn hat with fabric attached upside down to hot glue the lose pieces of fabric inside the paper bag

5. Add trinkets to outside of hat with hot glue gun

*My friend recommends getting fabric in a wholesale fabric district, if you can (so that you can get stuff for $1/yard or less). You could also make them without the fabric and just decorate the banks with stamps or paint them or just the trinkets if you didn’t want to deal with the fabric.

Another fun idea to go along with this would be to do a tea party (of course) in which your children get the big hats and you use small lunch bags to decorate with just stickers, markers, trinkets and/or paint (no fabric) for the tea party “guests” (AKA stuffed animals and dolls). We did the simple, small lunch bag hats for some of the younger children so that they could make them on their own with regular glue and markers.

This is a link to a blog I wrote about the fundraising event’s success. Read back to see how the act of one generous child changed the outcome of our efforts.


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Thanks for your support! I am so appreciative of your pins!
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