This is my first attempt at making a flat cap. This Men’s Flat Cap Vogue Pattern 8869 was the only flat cap pattern I could find so that’s why I bought it but it’s not exactly the style my husband likes, so I’m hoping once I’ve made it I can make a few changes and re-make it more in line with his tastes.
I’m making Hat A
I traced out the pattern in size Large, tacked the pattern pieces to the fabric, cut out the pieces of fabric and then cut out the interfacing.
I then pinned and tacked the interfacing to the fabric as per step 1, which states: ‘Pin interfacing to wrong side of each matching fabric section and baste’. I did this, but I thought basting was another word for tacking and a temporary stitch to keep things together instead of pins. However, it doesn’t actually state to stitch the interfacing to the fabric and this is the first time I’ve used sew-in interfacing rather than iron in, so I’m sure I must have made a mistake. Is the baste stitch in this instance permanent? Or should I have straight stitched them together as well? I’m really not sure. I think this is just going to have to be a toile and I’ll recreate it with more precision on my second attempt.
step 5 says ‘Press seam towards top’ – hmmm this is not very easy to do, perhaps it would be easier if I used a tailor’s ham.
step 6 says ‘Edge stitch top along seam’ – I wondered if this was necessary because it seemed like it would be fiddly to do and might spoil the look of the outside of the cap. I went ahead and did it, but I accidentally stitched below the seam instead of above,so I think it has spoilt the look of the hat. I’m still not sure of the purpose of it. Is it for aesthetics?, could it be to connect the interfacing to the fabric?, does it strengthen the seam?
So many questions!
The buckram I bought for the brim is medium weight and looks to me exactly like the material used in the vertical blinds I have in my windows. I bought it from ebay UK. I have since read that almost anything can be used for the brim such as cardboard, or the plastic from an ice cream tub. I don’t find this buckram terribly durable and doubt it will last long. I would not be keen to use cardboard because if it gets damp it’ll fall apart but I might try some kind of plastic for the next one.
Seeking Professional Cap Making Guidance
I watched a video by Arthur Porter of Dallas Designing Dreams Online Academy, on sewing a leather flat cap. In this video he uses little clamps to retrain the leather to curve around the base of the hat, bringing the elastic under and inside the hat edge. I liked this idea, so after attaching the ribbon to the outer edge of my hat, I pushed it inside towards the lining and used clothes pegs to hold it in place, while I hand stitched the other side of the ribbon to the lining.
As a first attempt at making a flat cap and still a beginner to sewing I’m generally pleased with the overall result and I really enjoyed making it, but there are a number of things I’d like to improve on my next attempt. I think the lining is too baggy, the ribbon does not give a professional looking finish, there must be a better way to do this. The buckram is a bit too flimsy and the hat is too small for my husband so I’ll try the XL next time.
Ideally I’d like to make a flat cap like this one, where the brim fits neatly underneath the cap, without a bit sticking out the front:
I will attempt this Flat Cap Vogue Pattern 8869 again soon with a slightly altered brim and using a stronger fabric than buckram.