Make a Pixie Hat and Booties in a Lunch Break

As promised last week here are the details of the improvised Christmas ‘costume’ I made for baby J (now 6 1/2 months old). I wanted something affordable that would be quick to make and she could wear again /or that could be reused otherwise.

I bought 30 cm / 13.75 inches of red wool felt. Wool felt is a little bit more expensive than ordinary felt, but looks much more stylish. Felt also has the great advantage that it does not need hemming, so it is quick and easy to work with.
In addition I got two 10 x 10 cm (4 x4 inches) patches of ordinary green felt in two different shades.

From this material I made a pixie hat, some baby booties and a fabric garland. She has been wearing the hat ever since I made it (as it is winter here). I’m planning to ‘reverse’ the booties into Christmas decoration for future years, and to use an image of the garland as a Christmas cake topper and for gift tags. This tutorial covers the pixie hat and the booties only. The garland tutorial is still to come.

Simple yet stylish pixie hat in 6 easy steps:

1. Begin by measuring your child’s head from forehead to neck (b in the picture above). The second measurement you need is the head circumference. If you have a wriggly little one it may be easier to measure them from ear to ear and add approx. 5 cm /2 inches to 7.5 cm / 3 inches for the back of the head.

2. Sketch out the shape of a pixie hat, using your measurements. My baby’s head is 34 cm/13.4 inches from ear to ear and 29 cm/11.4 inches from forehead to neck. So I made sure that in my sketch a (see picture above) was half the width of her head circumference (34 cm from ear to ear + 5cm for the back of the head =  39 cm divided by 2 = 19.5 cm, so a was 19.5 cm). b was roughly the size from forehead to neck (29 cm). You do not need to worry too much about the size just yet, as you can adjust it in the quick test hat that is made first.

3. Get a spare piece of fabric (I used an old tea towel) for the test cap. Cut 2 pieces of fabric around an inch bigger than your sketch (just to be on the safe side) and sew them together as indicated by the dotted lines in the picture above.

4. Get your participant to try it on (you may need to help!) and see how it fits. Use pins to adjust the size if necessary.

5. Once you are happy with the shape of your test hat, use it as a stencil and cut around it using your felt (or other material that you have chosen). For young children it is easier if the fastening is not located directly underneath their chin (as it is tricky to access). So make sure you cut one of the fabric strips which hangs down from the side of your hat longer than the other, so that it will pass underneath the chin and the hat can be fastened on the side of baby’s head (see pink dotted line in picture below).

6. Sew the cap together. Try it on your participant to see if you need to adjust anything. I also added a little tuck on both sides of the cap at approximately eye level to make it fit a bit more snugly. Sew on a button on the side (as indicated in the photo above) and cut a button hole in the end of the other (longer) fastening strip. Stand back and admire your work!

Congratulations! You have already finished the key part of the costume. How about a celebratory cup of tea? Go on, spoil yourself!

Cute booties for little ones

1. Start by measuring the length of your baby’s feet and sketch out a basic shoe shape on paper (see above). If your child already owns some booties, it may be handy to use them as guidance. Cut the shoe shape 4 times plus two long strips of fabric (mine were 6cm wide and approx. 30 cm long).

2. Sew each strip of fabric between 2 shoe shapes, so that you get two booties (see above). I worked in felt straight away but if you prefer you can also make a sample from a spare piece of fabric first. Cut two small leaves from your green felt and sew one on each shoe. Add some bells if you like.

3. Seam the front sides of the booties to give them more shape. Cut small slits around the opening, approximately 1 cm from the top of the shoe, and thread through a piece of ribbon or string.

Ta dah! Stand back and admire your handywork! Tell everyone you meet that you made the costume YOURSELF.

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