How to Make a Paper Sailor Hat

    by Kate Lee

    About the Author

    Kate Lee's how-to articles have been published in "Sew Simple," "Craft Stylish" and "Soft Dolls & Animals" magazines. She has been sewing for more than 20 years and has a master's degree in technical writing.


    The paper sailor hat is a classic kids’ project that’s fun and easy to make. It’s a great way to introduce kids to the art of paper folding and making a craft from recycled materials. For a more decorative paper sailor hat, you can use sheets of gift wrap. Many dollar stores sell inexpensive gift wrap in a variety of colors and patterns.

    Things You'll Need

    • Sheet of newspaper, butcher paper or gift wrap paper, 12 inches by 22 inches.
    • Flat surface
    • Scissors (optional)
    • Cellophane tape (optional)

    Select your sheet of newspaper, or cut packing paper or gift wrap to about 12 inches wide by 22 inches tall. When using newspaper, the comics page can be especially fun for kids.

    Place the paper on a table or flat surface with the narrow edge pointed toward you. If you're using gift wrap or paper that is printed only on one side, place the paper on the table with the blank side facing up.

    Fold the paper in half from top to bottom. Crease the paper well.

    Fold the paper in half from side to side and crease it, then unfold it. This leaves a crease line in the center of the paper.

    Fold the upper corners of the paper down to meet the crease line in the middle. The paper should now look like a triangle.

    Fold the bottom edge of the top layer of paper up about 1 to 2 inches, then flip the sailor hat and fold the bottom edge of the back side up about 1 to 2 inches as well. This makes the brim of the hat.

    Grasp the front of the bottom of the hat in one hand and the back of the hat in the other, and pull them gently away from each other to fluff out the hat and make it three-dimensional.

    • Use cellophane tape to secure the bottom flaps in place, if needed.
    • You can also use smaller paper, such as standard letter-sized 8 1/2 by 11 inch paper, to make a paper sailor hat for a small child or doll. For an adult-sized paper sailor hat, you may need a larger piece of newspaper.
    • Once the kids have completed folding the paper sailor hat, they can decorate it with markers or crayons if they wish.

    Photo Credits

    • BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images