Despite Robin’s utter aversion to wearing any hat, I wanted to start the tradition of a birthday crown to celebrate his first birthday. I hope there will be at least a few years when Robin’s crown will be worn with pride. I guess realistically the first couple of years it will be mindlessly pulled off, the latter years of childhood most likely begrudgingly worn “for mama and her stupid pictures”. Hopefully there may be a year or two between those extremes. One can but hope.
First of all I had a long think about what I wanted to decorate the crown with. As we always refer to Robin as a little Woodland Savage, and as his birthday is at the height of Autumn, a leaf and oak theme seemed fitting.
2 pieces of 20cm x 30cm felt for the actual crown – front and back
Felt or fabric scraps for decoration
Strip of elastic which will join the felted ends of the crown and ensure there is expansion potential for your crown for years of happy wearing. Mine was about 8cm
Piece of fabric to cover the elastic, approximately 10cm x 4cm. You could skip this but it makes it look pretty. It needs to be longer than the elastic to allow for the elastic stretch
First draw the crown shapes on to paper. I opted for a centre piece and two side panels which, when joined together, would equal 40cm approximately. This worked with the sizes of the felt I had but if your felt was bigger it would be even easier to do a continual piece. For the centre piece I folded the paper in half and drew half the desired shape so it would be symmetrical.
This picture illustrates that centre piece unfolded. Use the paper pieces as templates for marking onto one of the big pieces of felt. It doesn’t matter about pen marks as these will face the back and will ultimately be covered by the backing piece of felt.
On the front side of the pieces (i.e. opposite side to pen marks) embroider your chosen design and attach any felt or fabric shapes
I embroidered some of the design and used a combination of hand embroidery and the machine to attach my felt shapes. I sewed my three pieces together by placing side sides together, using a running stitch and then folding back out
Next cut the other big piece of felt to ensure it is large enough to line the front, decorated piece. I cut my piece in half on the horizontal and seamed it together on the machine, then turned it so the joining seam would be hidden inside the crown.
Using the machine, attach the front and back portions at the top and bottom of the crown shape, leaving a small seam. The two sides need to be left open at this stage to insert the elastic.
Select some fabric to cover your elastic. Placing right sides together, seam down the long edge leaving enough space for the elastic to be thread through and a few millimeters spare.This is to allow the fabric space to bunch up.
Press seams then turn right side out. Feed the elastic through so it reaches both openings of the fabric either side. You may need an extra pair of hands (or your teeth!)
Sew up the sides of the elastic to hold the fabric in place, nicely bunched up.
Finally slip each end of elastic into the side openings of the crown and machine securely in place.
Enjoy the feeling of pride at your lovingly created crown and wipe away those mama tears of happiness!