Saturday, April 29, 2017

How I Do It - Fleece Chemo Caps

These caps are very easy to do up.  Doesn't take long to make one.  Plus with the variety of fleece, these can be so colorful, bright and cheery.  

Before I begin, let me explain a few things.

Size - (this will make sense as I go along in the tutorial)

infant - 11"x15" rectangular piece with a 5" circle
young child - 13" x 17" rectangular piece with a 5-1/4" circle
teen - 15" x 19" rectangular piece with a 6-1/2" circle
adult - 17" x 21-1/2" rectangular piece with a 7-1/4" circle
medium adult - 19" x 23" rectangular piece with a 7-1/2" circle
large adult - 20" x 24" with a 7-3/4" circle

Be sure and know which way the fleece stretches.  With the rectangular piece you want the larger number to be the stretchy part of the fleece - horizontal direction.  The direction where there is give to the fabric.  This is what will be sliding down over the head.  With chemo patients, the head is tender.  Don't want pressure.  Want comfort and something soft.  Also be aware with some fleece there is more give than with other types of fleece.

And if applicable, there is a right side and wrong side with fleece.  You will need to know that when adding the top piece to the body of the hat.

When I've sewn these for hospice centers, I've batched them.  In other words, I get several cut out and then sew them assembly line style...doing all the body pieces, then adding all the tops to the body. 

The picture shown below has two plexi-glass templates.  One rectangle (body of the hat) and one circle (top of the hat).  I had a set of these templates made for my use.

A ruler and cutting matte along with a circular piece of cardboard or circular quilting template would work if you aren't able to make a set of plexi-glass templates for yourself.

When I make a fleece cap, I take the fleece and fold it in half making sure that the fabric lays so that the larger number of the rectangle is horizontal.  I cut out the rectangle pieces.  Once cut, I have two pieces and this will be the body for two caps.

With the remaining fabric, I cut out the tops for the hats.  EACH hat will need two circles.  I cut out TWO pieces PER cap.

I have enough cut out now for two hats.  Two body pieces - one per hat.  Four top pieces - two per hat.

Now I work on putting the hat together.

Once all the pieces are cut out, I take one of the side pieces and fold the vertical edges together (folding the sides together that don't stretch or give).  Keeping the right sides together I serge a 1/2" seam (think long tube).

If you don't have a serger, machine sewing a 1/2" hem will work.

After this seam is sewn/serged, I fold the serged tube in half.

I bring the bottom up to the top, serged seam inside.  I make sure the edges are together and even.  I even out the material with the fold making it nice and smooth.  Wrong side of fabric is inside, right side of fabric showing on the outside.

Then I take four straight pins and pin four equal the folds.  I pin at opposite points with the first fold.  Then I open the body of the hat up, bring the pins together and pin at the new folds.  At this point, I have a sewn tube folded in half, right side facing out and pinned in four places.

This step is important.  This helps in having a nice smooth top.  My fleece won't bunch up as I sew.  

You will understand this later in the tutorial.

The body of the hat is now ready for the top pieces.  I prepare them first before attaching them to the body of the hat.

I  take the two circle pieces, put WRONG sides together and fold in half and pin at the fold on the opposite edges.  Then I open up the circle, match the pins, fold again and mark with two more pins.  I now have two circles, wrong sides together, pinned in four places.

The body of the hat is done.  The top is done.

Here is where having those straight pins is important.

I match the pins up and pin.  Securing all of the hat pieces together.

Once those four areas or points have been pinned and secured, I pin the remaining portion of the top to the side.

Top is pinned to side.

I sew a 1/2 seam all away around the hat first, this anchors all the layers of fleece together and I can remove my pins for when I serge.

Now I serge the top to the sides, serging a 1/2" seam.

If you don't have a serger, sew the two together with your sewing machine, then zig zag around the edge.

Next I trim the threads, turn right side out and fold up.

A few others I've made...

This one I made for myself.  When I wear it, I'm always told, "I like your hat."  To which I say, "I do too.  I made it."

First time I wore it, a little girl, being carried by her daddy saw it and said, "I like your hat."  I smiled and said, "Honey, you made my day.  Thank you for the smile."  She was so cute!!

Made for a neighbor who was undergoing chemo treatments.   Body length no sew blanket and two hats.

Baby hats for a cousin's newborn baby boy.

One of many I made for hospice patients.

These make wonderful chemo hats.  They soften after multiple washings, they stretch and are warm.  Plus they aren't heavy to wear.