How to Make a Hat of Palm Tree Leaves

Written by louise harding
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How to Make a Hat of Palm Tree Leaves
Palm leaves can be dried or fresh. (Palm Tree image by Aribaby from Fotolia.com)

Themed parties are a festive way to celebrate the summer or a beach vacation. An extra embellishment to party decorations is a hat of palm tree leaves. Provide a palm tree leaf hat for each party guest to create an island or tropical feel to your event. By using an inexpensive straw hat as a frame, you can create a palm tree leaf hat from dried or fresh palm leaves in about 30 minutes.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Straw hat with brim (western, panama, beach styles)
  • Palm tree leaves, approximately 4 to 5 leaves, dried or fresh
  • Scissors
  • Glue gun
  • Glue sticks
  • 4-inch diameter tan or leaf green fabric circle
  • Twine, approximately 12 inches

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Cut the stem ends of the palm tree leaves straight across so the edge is flat. They might not be the same length. That's OK.

  2. 2

    Place the straw hat on a table. Use the glue gun to glue the top edge of one palm tree leaf onto the centre top of the straw hat. Glue down the entire palm leaf over the hat. The palm leaf will extend farther than the brim of the hat. Glue the leaf onto the brim as well.

    How to Make a Hat of Palm Tree Leaves
    Use an inexpensive straw hat as a frame. (straw hat girl image by robert mobley from Fotolia.com)
  3. 3

    Position another palm leaf beside the first, overlapping the leaves. The amount of overlap doesn't matter. Glue this palm leaf onto the hat, the other leaf, and over the brim. Glue the other two or three (depending on the size of the hat; you want the entire hat to be concealed by the palm tree leaves) palm tree leaves onto the hat, one next to the other, continuing to overlap the leaves.

  4. 4

    Squirt a fine line of glue around the 4-inch diameter tan or leaf green fabric circle. Use tan for dried palm tree leaves and leaf green for fresh palm tree leaves. Press the fabric circle down firmly onto the centre of the top of the hat to cover the origin point of the palm tree leaves. This gives the hat a cleaner finish. Use 100 per cent cotton fabric if available as this fabric glues well.

    How to Make a Hat of Palm Tree Leaves
    Glue the fabric circle to the top centre of the palm leaf-covered hat. (Hot glue gun isolated image by Marek Kosmal from Fotolia.com)
  5. 5

    Wrap a piece of twine around the hat and tie a knot in the front just above the concealed brim. Glue the twine into place. The twine gives the hat the appearance of holding the palm tree leaves together. Unravel the ends of the twine about 1/2 inch for a decorative effect.

  6. 6

    Trim or thin down the palm tree leaves if they extend farther than 6 inches over the brim of the concealed hat.

    How to Make a Hat of Palm Tree Leaves
    Trim the palm leaves if they extend farther than 6 inches from the hat brim. (scissors image by timur1970 from Fotolia.com)

Tips and warnings

  • Small plastic coconuts or tropical baubles such as tikis, fruit or parrots can be purchased at craft stores and glued to the top of the hat or on the front of the twine over the knot to individualise each palm tree leaf hat for your guests. Dried palm tree leaves can be purchased at craft stores and church supply stores, and fresh palm tree leaves can be purchased at some florists and garden centres.
  • Use caution with glue guns as they reach hot temperatures and may result in burns and injuries.

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