How to Build a Headdress (Part 1)

There are a good many ways to do this, but I'm cheap, and while Etsy has some great ones - I spend enough on costuming already.  You can do this in less than a week by the way.

I should mention that the base we'll be building is based on a genuine idea that is not something I came up with.  My friend from college (Ike) pioneered this method when we were in college and were in a costuming class together.  We made na ENTIRE dragon armor suit.  There are pictures... somewhere.

The rest of the headdress design and implementation is based on personal experience and building a fair number of these things in the last few years.  They are stable, comfortable, and can be lightweight.  I wear them for a boffer LARP so they also last and travel fairly well, adn are easy to wear int eh rain as well as the snow.

Here's the necessary parts:

  • Elmer's Glue all OR Sobo Glue
  • 1 piece of felt (any color)
  • Yarn for the weave parts (you can also do strips of fabric, or dreads if you're feeling fancy)
  • Hair clipy things to sew in and keep it stable (they use these in 3/4 wigs)
  • Magnets to attach other parts (optional)
  • Spare fabric to cover magnets
  • Beads (optional)
  • A headform
  • T pins
  • Tape
  • Hot glue sticks and gun
  • Needle and thick thread (I like embroidery floss)

Step 1: Prepping the base


The first step is to create a solid base with which to build from.  My favored method is using a hard but malleable felt.  Wrap your headform in plastic bags, this is the messy part.

Grab a Tupperware you're not interested in using again, and create a 50/50 mixture fo water to glue.  I like to mix it with my hands because I'm weird and also lazy.

When it's all nice and mixed up, pop that piece of felt in there and massage that glue into the fabric.  Mix it super well.

Then you're going to take this whole operation outside or somewhere you're comfortable dripping glue.  Then you're going to place the soaked felt on the head, and start pinning the felt down so it's tight to the head.


Now you're going to have to wait 12-20 hours for it to set! Here are some sleeping corgis to tide you over!