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Cancer Patient Hats Project at The Costumer's Manifesto Costume Design & ConstructionChemotherapy Patient Hats (8C)

My mom had to go through chemotherapy during mid summer in California a couple of years ago, and was annoyed, as many patients are, that not only did all her hair come out, but that wigs itched and were too hot. So, I came up with a simple solution (based on quick-change costume hats) that worked for head coverings till her hair grew back. What I did was this; I bought a single cheap wig that had hair similar to her natural hair, and cut it up into strips. I then went to a thrift store, (and also rooted around in my closet) for lots of soft comfortable hats of various types. I then sewed the strips of hair to the inside of each hat, like this:







I had some in open weave straw for hot days.















254images254photos1Momhats19.jpgAs you can see they all look like normal hair, but one doesn't have all that itchy wig cap and hot hair to deal with.

What To Do

Step 1: Get a wig that matches the hairstyle and hair color of the patient. Disassemble the wig into strips. If the original style is long in back, make sure to separate the long bits from the short bits.

Step 2: Find a group of hats with soft crowns with no scratchy bits inside. Remove any tags or anything that might poke the scalp.

Step 3: Whipstitch strips of hair to the inside of the hat like this:

What To Do



If you are working with a long style, sew a substantial amount of the long strips to the back part of the hat that sits at the base of the head. If the patient's scalp is especially sensitive, you can also sew a soft fabric strip over the top of the hair strips to cushion the scalp more.

When they are finished, photograph the hats as jpeg files and post them to your File folder at the class

[1]. Post a message to the group letting everyone know you have posted these pictures so you can get feedback.

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Related links:

a website for women living with breast cancer (Knitted wearable art breast prosthetics)

(Free downloadable pattern for above breasts)


Product Links

Push-Up Nipple Pals Breast Enhancers Push-Up Nipple Pals Breast Enhancers

Triangle Pals Breast Enhancers Triangle Pals Breast Enhancers

Nearly Me Transform Breast Forms (17-021) Nearly Me Transform Breast Forms (17-021)

Hat Book : Creating Hats for Every Occasion

Hat Tricks : 80 Instant Makeovers That Transform Ordinary Hats into Fabulous Creations Hat Tricks : 80 Instant Makeovers That Transform Ordinary Hats into Fabulous Creations

Complete Book of Sewing Complete Book of Sewing

Fiberarts : The Magazine Of Textiles [MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION] Fiberarts : The Magazine Of Textiles [MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION]


Costume Step-By-Step : The Complete Guide to Designing and Making Stage Costumes for All Major Drama Periods and Genres

This Page is part of The Costumer's Manifesto, originally founded by Tara Maginnis, Ph.D. from 1996-2014, now flying free as a wiki for all to edit and contribute. Site maintained, hosted, and wikified by Andrew Kahn. Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License; additional terms may apply. See Terms of Use for details. You may print out any of these pages for non-profit educational use such as school papers, teacher handouts, or wall displays. You may link to any page in this site.