Tutorial: A Cute Bucket Hat

I want to show you how to make the cutest bucket hat for your kid. (Like, ever. From the best FREE bucket hat pattern I've ever seen!) 

toddler hat pattern and easy tutorial

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Remember this bucket hat I made some time ago? Yes, this one.  My kid loves it and so do I, in fact it's my FAVORITE piece I've sewn so far for kids! And judging from your pinterest re-pins (here), many of you like it too, a good reason to help you make it yourself!

Do you want to make one yourself? Read on, below is an easy TUTORIAL waiting for you:)


Yes, totally true: the pattern has been made available free-of-charge by Oliver'+S! Yeey! (But just to be clear, I am not in any way associated with Oliver+S. Just in love with their bucket hat pattern :) It includes professional sewing instructions, meaning you can sew one too!

a toddler hat tutorial. How to make a bucket hat for kids

Why I love this sun hat - and the pattern (and why you might too):
  • It fits perfectly. (Some hats don't.) 
  • It doesn't keep falling off. (Some hats do.) 
  • The brim is just the perfect size for keeping the little face from direct sun. (Some hat brims aren't.) 
  • Comfortable!
  • So totally cute, cute, cute! (Especially if you get to choose your fav fabrics!)
  • The pattern is FREE! 

free bucket hat sewing pattern


To me, it simply looks like the best bucket hat pattern I've ever bumped into! However, I need to admit that the project might not be easy for amateurs like me (which I see as the only downside of the otherwise brilliant and clear instructions provided).

Well, but then again, why not make things easier, right? ;) You might want to try out what I (unprofessionally and inappropriately) call the 'inside-out technique' after I learned it from a wonderful book, but that's another story. I'll just show you how I used it as a kind of shortcut to make the project even easier. And if you like it, you can make it this way (the result will be the same as if you followed the original instructions).

3) Here, A SIMPLIFIED TUTORIAL (updated)

1) Grab the cutest two pieces of matching fabrics you've got in your stash. Or get some adorable ones. I love these gorgeously cute cotton prints I have found at peek-a-boo shop.

2) Use the free Oliver+S bucket hat pattern (here) to cut out the parts:

how to - reversible bucket hat

3) Sew the two pieces of the sides for the bucket hat together. And the two pieces of the brim, too. In both colors, so you've basically got 4 circular bands:

free bucket hat pattern for kids

4) Now, let's make one color first: pin the 'sides' circular band to the crown (match the triple notch marks!). You'll probably need to use a lot of pins and make tiny cuts into the fabric on the sides' piece to make the pieces match (clearly visible on the photo). Take your time. (Pinning was the hardest part for me as I'm not really a patient 'pinner'):

how to make a bucket hat for kids

5)  From here on, it just gets easier: just sew all the way around. If you've put the pins like on the picture, it will be easy to remove them as you go.

bucket hat sewing pattern

6) Then topstitch around the sides for a nicer look:

how to sew a hat

7) Take the brim piece and pin it to the cap (right sides together!) - you'll just need to put in a few pins. Basically just pin the notches together and add a pin here and there, if you need to:

how to sew a hat with a brim

8) ...aaaand sew all the way around. Easy peasy:

bucket hat pattern

9) To make the seam look prettier, topstitch the brim like you topstitched around the crown (see No 6 above):

how to make a bucket hat with a free pattern

10) Repeat steps 4-9 with the other color, and you've got yourself these two beauties:

reversible bucket hat pattern

11) Put the two 'hats' together with the right sides facing each other. Sew the brims (i.e. the largest circle) together, but not all the way round - leave an opening of, let's say 5 cm. You'll need it to turn the hat (... and here the words promised above...) inside out

a toddler hat tutorial and reversible bucket hat pattern

12) Now turn it inside out through the opening and you've basically made it! Fingerpress and close (=sew) the opening. Iron the brim so you get an even outer edge. Pin around the sides so you stabilize the brims for stitching (sorry, only the blue side of the hat available here):

bucket hat tutorial for toddlers

13) Now, the only thing left to do is stitching the brim (see the lines all the way around the brim of the completed hat? Yes, those.) They will give stability to the hat.

brim hat for kids

BONUS HINT on stitching the brim: I used a turquoise thread, which makes the (somewhat squiggly) lines and the (uneven) gaps visible. I just like them as they are (uneven lines have been my signature ;). But there's high chance you will want to hide them, so you can do that by choosing the thread color that will match the fabric. Simple, right?

free bucket hat pattern

And here it comes ... another cute hat for a cute head. Didn't I say it's the best bucket hat pattern I've ever seen? Now go, make one for your kid, too. 

And if you are looking for some adorable new fabric, you can check out these cute fabrics by peek-a-boo. (They've also got gorgeous animal prints!) Now you can start making your kids' stylish DIY hat collection!

Happy sewing :)


Sometimes life gets in between and there's simply no time to make something (let alone a hat!), no matter how much you'd like to sew. Happens to me sometimes too :) -

Want More Free Patterns?

Feel free to check out some of my FREE PDF patterns on Craftsy. They are all linked to my free tutorials on the blog, so it will be super easy for you to use them to sew something cute for yourself:

Click here to get to my other PDF patterns on Craftsy.

Or sign up to get email updates to stay in the loop. If you sign up HERE, you also get a freebie - AppleGreen Cottage subscribers get the 3 smallest sizes of my Perfect Earwarmer Headband Pattern (size baby to one year) as a free PDF. Check it out here:

The best earwarmer headband tutorial and 8-size PDF sewing pattern. The smallest 3 sizes (baby to 1 year) are free to download for email subscribers. This perfect headband pdf pattern will add a pop of color to your kids' fall wardrobe AND let them stay WARM outdoors this fall.

Or check out my newest (and cutest) addition to Craftsy patterns:

DIY Mini Fabric Bin - just the cutest little bin to sew! It's an easy beginner sewing project. Get your PDF pattern on Craftsy.

Happy sewing!

An easy and FREE step-by-step tutorial to make the cutest bucket hat for your kid. Get your FREE PATTERN and updated SIMPLIFIED HOW-TO, appropriate for beginner sewists, too.


  1. I <3 your summer hat!! Pinning your tutorial. Following you now too:)

  2. Hi Damjana, I featured your hat and tutorial today.

    1. Pam, that's awesome! Thank you for featuring the bucket hat for kids, I'll put up a button with the link to your blog on my Features page. Immediately! And I'm sure the tutorial will work for your readers, too - with all the sun in Australia (oh, I'd love to be there now!!). I'm happy when I see my work is useful to people. :) Hugs from cludy and (at the moment not at all sunny) Slovenia!

  3. Oohh, I'll have to make one for my 2 year old! Pinned for when the sunny weather comes!

    1. Anna,
      thanks :) I hope you'll enjoy creating tis cute hat at least as much as the kiddoes love wearing it! Damjana

  4. Hello, I want to ask the free pattern was printed by A4 paper size or which size ?
    love you hat ! Thank you so much !

    1. Yes, I printed it out on an A4 format.
      When printing out, just make sure you use it with no-scaling (or, on some printers, 100% size). This way the pattern should come out OK. Let me know how it goes! Damjana

  5. Love your pattern & tutorial!!! It is exactly what I'm looking for. I just have one problem. It is too small for my grandson who thinks he is the great big game hunter & wants a hat like this that they wear on the T.V. shows. Do you have a larger one or could tell me how to enlarge this one? Thank you for this great tutorial & for any help you can give me. God bless.

    P.S. Could you please email me any help you can provide? Thank you.

    1. Glenda,
      hi! Thanks for commenting, I'm sending you an email right away. Damjana

  6. I love this little hat pattern. My question is how do I get the measurements for the different sizes? I cant seem to find the measurements for the extra small hat. Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi, anonymous,
      the free pdf pattern comes in four sizes (extra small is one of them) and the pattern should be visible to you if you click the link to the pattern. As for measurements, I'm copying the information from the pdf (just in case you haven't found it) for the extra small hat size: 'Extra-small fits 6-12 month-old, inside crown measurement= 18" (small, 12-24 M, 19";
      medium, 3-5, 20"; large, 6-8, 21")' - however please bear in mind that I used the largest size for our three-year old and it fits him. Therefore I think the sizes are a bit on the small side, so you might also consider using the SMALL size. I hope this helps! Happy sewing, Damjana

  7. Hi, how long did it take to sew the hat?

    1. Hi, glad you asked - just sewing - it won't take you more than an hour. When I was taking photos of the process, it took me way more, though. (but you don't need to do that :) Enjoy! Damjana

  8. I have made quite a few of these hats for my babies in the last 2 years....you can never have too many. I just go to spotlight to find some cute patterned kids fabric and matching plain colours then I mix them in different combinations to get the reversible hat. I add a string (made from matching fabric) and a cord holder (?) to help keep the hat on their head!

    1. That's a good idea, adding a string and a cord holder. Must try it out too, thank you!

  9. Amazing tutorial! I will share this blog to my friends and encourage them to make bucket hat for their kid. A color pink bucket hat for baby girl would be nice. :)

    1. White+Warren,
      thank you so much for your comment! So there will be a bunch of your friends' kids running around in little colorful hats, how cute! And yes, a combination of pink hues would be great! Must try it out myself too, for my little baby girl - but first I need to stack on girly fabrics. (With a boy in our home, I've only been buying blue and green for the last three years, LOL). Have a great day,

    2. Thanks! It's true colorful hats are very cute. I'm glad that you appreciate my comment. Looking forward to read amazing blogs from you :)

  10. Would flannel fabric work, would it hold it's shape?

    1. Hi, Linda,
      and thanks for asking. I haven't made a hat (using this pattern) from flannel yet, but as far as I know, it should work really nicely - but just to make sure your project turns out really nice, at least one of the two layers should be thick flannel. But since flannel is warm, I believe you want to make a hat to be used for transitional months and not for the hot summer, right?

  11. Thank you! Your tutorial is so simple that I could make a cute jeans hat for my 3 months old son (I printed the PDF a little smaller scale to 94% because my baby 's head measures its only 41cm diameter). Greetings from Chile!

    1. Lulamon,

      I'm so happy to hear that! Your son is lucky to have a crafty mom (and a brand new and unique jeans hat ;)
      Have a great day,

  12. Just made a hat for a happy 4 year old to match a shirt... She love's it and I made it in a few hours. Your tips are very helpful. Thank you for the wonderful tutorial! Eva

  13. Love this! My Aussie bucket hat disintegrated a few years ago. I've been trying to make a adult bucket hat with no luck. I need the longer brim that I can't find here in San Diego CA. I'm a eek white redhead and at 64 I have to wear a hat walking the dogs in any weather. I can burn in the shade! Any ideas on making this adult? Thanks for tutorials and your website, seeing it done helps me. I usually have trouble with the simplest instructions but tiny paper piecing quilting just lights me up - so fun...I'm very proud of my 57 piece dragon quilt block! Anyways, thanks everyone for any info you can give me

  14. Did you not use the interfacing?

    1. No, it wasn't needed. THe two fabric layers were just enough for me.
      However, try out a version with interfacing if you'd like a sturdy hat.

  15. Hi Damjana,

    Thanks so much for this tutorial. I just want to make two of those hats for my sons but I am not sure whether the pattern includes seam allowances?

    Regards from Germany :)

    1. Hallo Mareike,

      no, I didn't add any seam allowances to the hats I've made so far. If I remember correctly, they are already accounted for (didn't find any instructions about that at Oliver&S' site though...) Allerliebste Grüsse nach Deutschland! <3


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