Saturday, August 20, 2011

Fabric Flower Headband Tutorial

Hello! I am Melissa from Kensington Cottage. For those of you who don't know me, I am a stay at home mom of 1 (so far) who loves crafting, and junking. I love to spend my weekends going to yard sales and especially to auctions finding all kinds of vintage goodies for next to nothing! I also love to sew, especially for my daughter. My daughter, who I call Little Monkey, loves fancy hair things, which got me started making fabric flowers clips, and now headbands. I recently opened an etsy store, where I sell fabric flowers, as well as vintage items, I hope you wills top in and take a peek! Today's tutorial will be a fabric flower elastic headband. They are very easy to make, and can be as simple or fancy as you want them to be. So, lets get started.

You will need:
Fabric (I prefer to use different types of fabric so you have different textures)
Felt to match your fabric
Sewing machine OR Needle and thread
Hot glue gun and glue
1/4-1/2 inch elastic or ready made elastic headband
Optional: pearls, rhinestones, beads, ribbon embelleshments

First, you will want to choose the style of flower you want. There is no wrong style. If you need ideas you can go here or here or here for a complete list of flower tutorials. I chose to use a folded flower like this for the center.
Next, I decided I wanted mine to be a bit whimsical, and airy looking, so I made some flowers out of a sparkly netting. To do this, cut a piece of netting that is one inch wide and about 24 inches long. You will then want to use a gathering stitch, either on your sewing machine or by hand. You want the longest stitch on your machine, if you are doing it by hand, you want your stitches to be about a 1/4 inch long. When you are done, simply pull one string and forced the fabric away from where you are pulling the string. It should look like this.
Next, you want to put a little hot glue along where your thread is, working in 1 inch increments. Be very careful, the glue is very hot, and it will burn you!! You want to roll the netting in on itself until you have a "flower" that looks something like this.
Now, you will want to cut a piece of felt about 4-6 inches long and 3-4 inches wide. This will be the base of your headband. You will attach all the flowers to this, so make sure it is big enough. Place your large flower in the center, or off center if you prefer, there is no wrong way. Then we will start filling in with smaller flowers. Just play with the placement till you like what you see.
Here is what we have now.
I want a little contrast, so I am going to add some dark brown "rose buds" next. To do this I used an old knit skirt, and cut a 1 inch strip about 18-24 inches long. Start by running a bead of glue along about a 1/2 inch of fabric. Roll the fabric so you have a nice tight center. Then you are going to give the fabric a twist. Like this,
Then add a dot of glue and press the fabric to it. You will then make another twist, followed by another dot of glue. Continue this until the rose bud gets to the size you want. It should look like this when it is finished.
I have a love of all things vintage and antique, so when I spotted a stash of antique lace a month ago, I had to have it. I decided that they would make great flowers, and I was right! So now I am going to use some lace to make a flower. Its very simple, its easiest to use the same method as we did for the netting flowers, however, you may want to loosely gather the lace, depending on the thickness and style, it might look better, you'll just have to play with it.
NOTE: When working with lace, particularly lace that is crocheted or woven, you will want to use Fray Check on any cut ends to keep them from unraveling. You can find this at your local fabric or craft store. It is also great for holes in clothing! Here is what my lace flower looks like.
My last flower is a satin flower with burnt edges. You can find the tutorial here.
So, now I have it all laid out the way I want it, it looks like this.
Once you have your flowers placed where you want them, its time to glue them down to the large piece of felt. Now you can add any embellishments you want. I love pearls, since they give these a vintage feel, but you can use what you want, just experiment with it till you like it.
Next you want to trim all the excess felt away from your flowers. The back should look like this.
Now you need your elastic, or ready made elastic headband. If you are doing your own, it is very simple. Measure the head of the person who will wear this headband, cut the elastic about a 1/2 inch smaller, unless they like the elastic tight. Next you will need a sewing machine, use a zig zag stitch and bring the two pieces of elastic together like this.
Then stitch across the two, you will want to adjust your stitch length to its widest setting, when you get to the bottom, back stitch to the top, repeat this twice. This will keep the elastic together and won't come apart.

Now you want to cut a piece of felt, the same color as your backing, about an 1 1/2 inch wide and using a zig zag stitch you want to sew your elastic to that felt piece, this can be done with a sewing machine, or by hand.
Now, run a bead of glue down each side of the felt, not touching the elastic, then attach to the felt on the back of your flowers.
Now you are done! Here is the finished product.
Here are a couple of other types you can do.

Now, if you are not interested in making your own, you can buy the one we made today, as well as a couple of others in my etsy store!

I hope you enjoy making these as much as I do! Lets give Krista a big Thank You for letting me join you today!


  1. Hey, Melissa. This is a great tutorial...I just wish I could sew ;P
    I am back from break, and wanted to stop by and say HI!