Steampunk Top Hat

I just finished whipping up a steampunk top hat... 
I repurposed a cardboard hat I used as a prop for a Mad Hatter party for my grandson to wear. Very basic.... very boring. Blah.
It had seen better days and was needing a makeover.

I pulled off all of the fabric, which made it a little wobbly at first. 
The whole reason I started this makeover on this hat was because I bought a stack of foam sheets at a yard sale for .50¢ I crack myself up. Anywho, I got out my paper cutter and started randomly cutting up some of the foam sheets into squares and rectangles. No rhyme or reason, I just cut them up. I used my glue gun and covered the entire hat with several layers of the foam core. I then got out some two part epoxy to create little dots to resemble rivets along the edges of each square of foam. I used a toothpick to dab the little dots of glue along each edge. I did this over several hours letting areas dry in between.
Once that was all finished-- I painted the hat with brown acrylic paint. The photo below shows what one coat of paint looked like covering the multi colors of foam sheets. All in all it took three coats to get full coverage.

Once the brown paint had dried, I added some watered down black paint to add even more dimension to the look of the hat. Lastly, I took some silver metallic paint and added a little bit of silver color to the rivets on the hat. Looking awesome!

I lined the inside of the steampunk hat with pages from an old Sears Roebuck catalog. I sealed the paper with Mod Podge. Lastly, I added a sweat-band to the hat using black felt. I originally was going to add pages from a super-cool old metal hardware book--- think I could find it? Um, no.

I really like how the foam sheets ended up looking like leather. I am in the thinking stages of what kind of hat band I want on this hat... I would also like to make some steampunk goggles to add around the hat as well. I have a lot of foam sheets left over, so I'll probably make a few more steampunk hats in the near future. Maybe I'll even whip up some small top hats for my grandaughter's Disney Animator dolls.
big hugs,


  1. Cute idea. I think the dolls really need a hat!!
    Happy weekend.
    xx, Carol

  2. Oh my goodness that is such a clever idea, and it does look so real!!! I even love the way you finished the inside too, Fantastic!!!

  3. Cheryl, you are too clever! I'm not very crafty, so when the mood strikes I'll have to come back here for inspiration and how-to's!

  4. That hat looks so authentic! Very clever. I love watching your creative magic.


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