How to Add Trim to Any Fedora

fedora with trim

Now it’s personal. Your hat, that is. Give a wool, straw, or cotton fedora a little flair when you add a fresh new band and trim like feathers, leather, and snaps and buttons. Change up your hat’s look for the season or just to match your outfit. Read on to learn how to make your topper totally unique.

Fedora-style hat
¼ yd (23 cm) fabric
Rotary cutter
Cutting mat
Straight pins
Sewing machine
Iron and ironing board
Knitting needle
Hand-sewing needle or fabric glue
Embellishments like feathers, a snap, button, or leather lacing

Note: This project explains how to make a bias-cut fabric band for a hat. (Fabric cut on the bias bends easily to accommodate curves, like the tapered band of a hat.) If you like, feel free to use 24” (31 cm) of single-fold bias tape or double-fold bias tape ironed open, instead.

To determine how long your hatband should be, measure around the base of the hat.

1. Cut 2½”- (6 cm-) wide strips of fabric on the bias (the diagonal). You’ll need to sew together multiple strips to achieve the length you need; plan how many strips you need by adding 1” (2.5 cm) to each strip for seam allowances plus 3” (7.5 cm) for overlap.

2. Position the ends of 2 strips of fabric, right sides together, at a 90-degree angle. Pin then sew the strips together, as shown. Trim away the excess fabric. Unfold and iron the seam open. Continue adding strips of fabric until you have the length of your hatband plus 3” (7.5 cm).

fedora with trim

3. Place the sewn strip of fabric on your work surface right side up. Fold it in half, long sides together. Pin then sew along this long side.


4. Turn the strip right side out using a knitting needle to help you.


5. Rotate the seam so it runs down the center. Iron flat.


6. Wrap the hatband, wrong side up, around the base of the hat to find the perfect fit. It should be snug. Pin the ends, right sides together. (see below)

7. Remove the band from the hat and sew along the pinned line multiple times to secure it. Trim the ends 1” (2.5 cm) away from the seam.


8. On each 1” (2.5 cm) end, tuck the raw edges on opposite sides of the same end inside the fabric strip to form a point.
Sew in place to secure.


Turn the band right side out and slide it onto the hat. Either sew or glue on your embellishments.



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