I think it's pretty clear that I am thrilled to be the mother of three little girls, so I wasn't sure Dana would go for my BOY idea, but Audrey is a bit of a tom-boy (no pink and princesses for her--she prefers dogs and dinosaurs and purple), and I have a bunch of nephews (5 of them), and it seems all the babies being born around here are boys, and so somehow I've managed to get the boy vibe going well enough to (fake it?) make it. I'm so happy to be Celebrating the Boy on MADE today (almost as happy as I am about getting to know Dana)!
When my family is in Scottsdale, AZ, we love to visit the "Train Park." My girls, especially Audrey, love to ride the train and carousel and generally run around. Last time I found some engineer caps in the gift shop there and thought one would look so darling on Audrey. But Scarlett has to be exactly like her right now, so I needed them in two sizes. Which is how I got to this pattern for a child's engineer cap in sizes medium (heads 18"-20") and large (21"-23").
With two sizes, and a bit of elastic in the back, this cap should work for boys of all sizes (such as my curly headed nephew)...
So if you have someone in your house who can't stop singing, "Down by the station early in the morning,..." or "I've been working on the railroad..." take a look at this tutorial and see if this isn't the perfect cap for their boyish locomotion (whether they are girls or boys). Chug, chug, toot, toot, off we go!
ENGINEER CAP TUTORIAL
• ¾” elastic (about five inches)
• ½ yard fabric for hat
• Scrap of lining fabric (quilting weight) for Cap and brim (heavier weight, such as canvas recommended)
• Medium-Heavy weight fusible interfacing
• Pattern (download and print out--it's four pages)
- Cap (Piece "A"): Cut 1 of fabric and 1 in lining (I used a quilting weight cotton).
- Brim (Piece "B"): Cut two of fabric. Cut 1 of lining fabric (I used a canvas). Cut 2 of heavy fusible interfacing.
- Headband (Piece "C"): Cut 2 in fabric. Cut 1 in heavy weight fusible interfacing. (Please note: use the pattern piece provided and ADD 1 INCH FOR THE LARGE/23" SIZE OR CUT ON THE DASHED LINE FOR THE MEDIUM/20" SIZE)
- Optional Patch piece: There are multiple options here. You can use the patch with the train silhouette cut out (cut one round patch piece in contrast fabric, trace on train silhouette and cut out train silhouette from circle. If desired you can cut a smaller square piece of fabric to back the train cut-out.) Or you can cut out the train silhouette in a contrast fabric to sew/stick on top of patch or directly on the cap. (Or you can stencil this design on the hat using freezer paper.)
Lay interfacing on top of headband piece and trim it .5” around. Iron interfacing to wrong side of one headband piece. Iron interfacing to brim pieces: either to both sides of the lining piece or to one side of the lining piece and one of the fabric pieces.
Place cap pieces (fabric and lining) wrong sides together. Baste around with a .5” seam allowance to hold piece in place.
To mark pleats, lay the pattern piece on top of the fabric stack and stick pins through all the dots marking the pleats. Pull paper off pins (you can tear it a bit).
Referring to the pattern you will create box pleats around the cap. Do this by pinching the pin you’re moving in the direction of the arrow on the pattern and pull it towards the other pin to pleat.
Pin in place. Do this on the other side of the “box” and repeat all the way around the cap.
Baste with a .5" seam allowance to hold pleats in place and press pleats about 3" from the edge of the cap.
Sew headband piece together, right sides facing, at the short end to form a loop. Repeat with second piece.
Fold under one of the long raw edges .5” on each headband piece and press.
If you are using a patch now is the time to apply it! I did this two different ways. On the larger hat I used spray adhesive to affix my turquoise fabric to the back of the patch with the train cut out. Then I affixed the composed patch to the hat and zigzag stitched around the patch. You could also hand or machine stitch around the train cut out to reduce fray. For the smaller hat I cut out the train silhouette, used spray adhesive to position it on the hat, and then zigzag stitched around the edges of this applique.
(You can skip this next step with the elastic if the cap fits your child’s head as is—you could try it on at this point and see.) To add elastic to the back of the cap, you’ll be sewing it on the inside of one of the headband pieces. Place one raw edge of the elastic on the wrong side of the inside headband piece, about an inch to the left of the left side of the back box pleat, and stitch down on the inside headband piece (it's ok if the stitching overlaps the pressed .5" fold).
You’ll cut the elastic and sew down the other raw edge one inch to the right of the right side of the back box pleat. You’ll want this section to gather a bit so pull the elastic tighter or looser depending on the size of your child’s head. I was aiming to have this area pull in by about 30%, so I laid the elastic flat, placed a pin about 2/3 of the distance between the sewing spots, and then pulled the pinned elastic from there to the sewing spot on the right and sewed in place with a zigzag.
Now the elastic is pulling in this area between the "sewing spots" on either side of the back box pleat and you have the loose headband pieces. Pull the elastic taught so the headband pieces lay flat together and baste close to the edge (we’ll top stitch this area when we sew in the brim).
To make the brim lay the pieces in this order. Fabric piece right side up, fabric piece right side down (so the two fabric pieces are stacked right sides together), lining/canvas piece on top.
Pin and stitch along the out edge with a .5” seam allowance. The inner curve is left open.
Trim and clip seam around curves. Turn right side out and press. Baste the inside curve with a .5” seam allowance. Top stitch close to the edge of the brim.
Now you’ll attach the brim to the front of the hat. Start by pinning the brim to the wrong side of the outside headband piece (the brim will be "sandwiched" between the two headband pieces). Be sure to match the center of the headband piece and the center of the brim. Pin the top side of brim to the inside of outside headband piece, meaning the headband piece that is showing when the hat is worn (it will touch the area you pressed under). Line up the edge of the headband with the basting stitch along the brim. You should also “catch” the points of the brim well within the headband so no raw edges are showing.
With the brim pinned to the outside headband piece, pin the inside headban piece to the underside of the brim, aligning the edge of the headband with the basting stitch. This will ensure that the inside edge of the headband piece will be "caught" in the topstitching seam.
Pin the rest of the headband pieces together aligning the folded edges as well as possible. Stitch all around the headband close to the folded edge.
You did it! You've constructed an Engineer Cap for some lucky boy (or girl)...
...or maybe you've even made two! "Dinah, blow your horn!"