Monday, October 14, 2013

Striped Bonnet Making-Of

When I last posted about my striped bonnet in the works, I had it all cut out and the fashion fabric pieces were stay-stitched to the buckram interfacing.  My next task was to sew the crown together and line the brim.  I then needed to bind the edge of the brim in a decorative manner before attaching it to the crown and adding the crown lining.  I had a three small lengths of cream satin ribbon to work with, and I set one piece aside to go around the base of the crown, and another for future trim.  This left me with a piece that was long enough to go around the front of the brim, with some extra.  I wanted a smooth fit with some visual interest, so I marked off 1/4" tucks every two inches and stitched them by hand just in the middle of the ribbon:  

This left the edges free so I could take in more length on the inside curve of the ribbon, to make it lay smoothly:

I used my nifty little mini-iron to press the pleats flat:

Then I sewed all those tiny pleats down by hand.  It was a long and tedious process, and several times throughout I questioned whether I would like the finished effect, but overall I'm happy with it.  Next I attached the brim and tried it on my trusty styrofoam head.

 But I could not get the buckram in the crown to hold its shape properly!

Brian the Engineer suggested I line it with cardboard.  So I raided the recycling bin.

I used the pattern piece I had traced when I made my buckram mockup, and cut 5/8" in from the edges all around to account for the seam allowance.

Once I got the insert in the crown I had to shave down some of the edges to get it to fit properly.

Next, the lining got pinned in place and sewn in by hand:

I played around a bit with the remaining ribbon, and decided on a simple bow in the back:  

Brian suggested I fold the ribbon in half to go around the base of the crown, and this turned out to look much better.

All finished!  You can see pictures of my mom wearing it in my previous two posts.    


  1. A sandwich of iron-on interfacing works well for stabilizing buckram for bonnet crowns. In a workshop that I went to we fused interfacing to both sides of the buckram and then sewed around it--works really well! The bonnet you made is delightful :)