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How to Make a Fabric Headband

Rose is a full-time freelance writer who frequently writes about education, special education, DIY projects, food, Milwaukee, and more. - link no longer active - link no longer active

Handmade headbands are an easy, inexpensive craft project that is perfect for girls and women of a wide variety of ages. Put together a few for yourself or your kids, have a rainy day craft session with your girls, or organize a larger project for a shower or party. If you don't sew, don't let the word fabric throw you. A number of these tutorials are no sew or require a minimal amount of hand sewing or straight machine sewing. I've also included a handful of tutorials for fabric flowers that you can add to virtually any type of headband. Many of them are also no sew.

Happy crafting!

Headbands are a great item to sell at craft fairs and through online venues, such as Etsy.

Headbands are a great item to sell at craft fairs and through online venues, such as Etsy.

Kelly made these cute headbands as a kids party favor.

Kelly made these cute headbands as a kids party favor.

Why make a headband?

Inexpensive headbands are available in abundance at every drug store and big box store as well as numerous clothing stores. If you're looking for a homemade headband, there are lots of sellers online and at craft fairs who offer headbands. So why make them yourself? Here are some of the most popular reasons that people make them.

  • Interested in saving money. Even though there are a number of inexpensive headbands out there, they can add up quickly. This is particular true for babies and young children who need new sizes frequently. It is often less expensive to make headbands than purchase them, especially if you are looking for fabric (as opposed to plastic) headbands with detail (flowers, sequins, etc.).
  • Customization and personalization options. Do you have a daughter who only wants to wear purple items or pieces with lace? Are you having trouble finding a comfortable headband in a style that you prefer for yourself? It can be easier and less expensive to make something yourself than spending hours searching for just the right thing.
  • Option for using up fabric scraps. If you make larger fabric projects on a regular basis and have lots of fabric scraps, headbands can be a good option for using some of them. There's no need to make a headband simply to use up scraps, but if you will wear one or know someone who will wear one, this can be a simple, fun project for those scraps.
  • Gifts. Headbands make a great gift for girls and women of many ages. You can give them for birthdays and Christmas. They also make great party favors for wedding showers, baby showers, and birthday parties.
  • Selling. If you enjoy working with fabric and have been making headbands for personal use for a while, you may decide that you want to step up the game and start selling some of them.

Fabric Headband Tutorials

  • Flower Fabric Headband. Keep the headband simple and make it all about the flower. A simple strip of fabric will dress up a basic headband or you can leave it plain.
  • Wide Fabric Headbands. Do plastic headbands give you a headache? Opt for a fabric headband instead. You only need a few simple sewing supplies and can choose hand or machine sewing.
  • Narrow Fabric Headband. For those who like the stretchy fabric headband option but don't want a wide headband, head over here. She fits the fabric right over a narrow piece of elastic.
  • Fabric Fishtail, Boho-Chic Headband. The author chose to machine sew her strips, but you can use the strips as is if you prefer or can customize it with a different kind of stitch. This is a great project for using up oddly shaped fabric scraps from other projects. You don't need strips that are the same width or that are evenly cut for the headband to turn out beautifully.
  • 5 Strand Braided Headband. One of the most popular fabric headbands today is the t-shirt headband. You don't have to use t-shirt fabric to make a braided headband, but it works perfectly if you want something that has a little stretch. Re-purpose old t-shirts that are too small, stained, or simply aren't being worn anymore. You can also pick up cheap t-shirts at any second hand clothing store or at craft stores.
  • Re-purposed Baby Pants Headband. Alisa Burke has a brilliant idea for turning old baby pants with a stretch waist into a baby headband. How neat is that? You don't even need a new piece of elastic, and you can use some of the other pants fabric for flowers to attach to the headband.
  • Turban Style T-Shirt Headband. Alisa also has a re-purposed clothing headband idea for girls and woman. There aren't a lot of directions here, but the concept is pretty self-explanatory. You'll have to play around with it a little bit to get the size and style that works for you.
  • Glitter Fabric Headband. I'm sure that most people don't have glitter fabric on hand so you may need to head out and purchase some for this project. The blog author found hers with the craft foam at Hobby Lobby. She created a heart but of course you can create any shape that you like.

How long should I make my headband?

Age Headband Length (inches)



3-6 Months


6-12 Months


1-12 Years Old




Tip: When in doubt, make your headband a couple extra inches longer than you think it will need to be. It is easier to take a little fabric off later than it is to add more or start over with a new piece of fabric.

Headband Measurement Source

Tip: You can mix and match virtually any fabric flower tutorial with any fabric headband tutorial. The customization options are endless.

How to Make Fabric Flowers for Headbands

You can use fabric glue or a hot glue gun for nearly all of these tutorials.

  • Rolled Fabric Flowers. There are many variations of this tutorial out there for both fabric and paper. It is one of the simplest ways to make a flower out of a single piece of material.
  • Fabric Rosettes. This is a very similar concept to the basic rolled fabric flower and is one of the most popular fabric flowers. If you've seen these before and have been intimidated, you'll be amazed at what a simple craft project this is.
  • Fabric Fireworks. These unique flowers look like little fireworks. I love how the blog author layers a smaller one on top of a larger one. This project will wow everyone.
  • Layered Fabric Flowers with Fabric Covered Button Center (with template). Please take the time to print the template on cardstock, cut it out, and pin it to your fabric. It is so much easier than trying to cut free hand. This is another great excuse to make or use up some fabric covered buttons. There are lots of detailed photos and directions here.
  • Fabric Peonies. This is one of the most involved fabric flower tutorials out there as it involves applying light heat to the fabric to curl the edges. The effect is fabulous and well worth the effort.
  • Stacked Felt Flower (with template). Felt is one of my favorite fabric materials for craft projects, as it is inexpensive and easy to cut. I love the idea of using a rhinestone for the flower center.
  • No Sew Fabric Flowers with Buttons. Cut, fold, and glue fabric, then glue a button in the middle. What's not to love here? This is so simple and beautiful.
  • Fabric Flowers with Fabric Stiffener. Jessica loves to use fabric stiffener for many of her fabric projects. If you're creating more elaborate fabric flowers, particularly those with thin fabric, and want to hold their shape firmly or simply want a stiffer fabric aesthetic, this is a good option.

More crafty resources from the author.

© 2012 Rose Clearfield

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Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 28, 2013:

Thanks, Nourhan! That's great.

Nourhan on May 28, 2013:

This is so cute and creative. I like it and will absolutely make one for me.


Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 16, 2013:

RTallioni, yes, for sure! You're right that the baby creates a little bias. :) Thanks, that's great!

RTalloni on May 16, 2013:

These would make fun summer crafts to do with girls of all ages! The pretty coral rose is my favorite embellishment, though I think it's no fair to put a baby in a group of photos if someone might be tempted to choose a favorite. ;) Very nice job on this hub, btw. I'm going to look at the BoHo headband now.

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 28, 2012:

That's great, kr! I'm always happy when I inspire someone with a crafty project. :)

Kristi Sharp from Born in Missouri. Raised in Minnesota. on August 28, 2012:

You are definitely a pro at this! I love reading your hubs because they entice me to get out my sketch pad or my glue gun! Awesome and up -K

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 20, 2012:

Thanks, Leah! I'm the same way with them. You're right that it's neat how many different ways you can customize handmade headbands.

Leah Lefler from Western New York on August 20, 2012:

Super cute idea, Rose! I don't wear headbands often, but I know a lot of people who do wear them. The fabric rosettes are really cool - I love the way you can accessorize and personalize headbands when you make them yourself!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 19, 2012:

That's awesome, Linda. :) Have fun with your handmade headbands!

Linda Chechar from Arizona on August 19, 2012:

I love headbands, so this Hub is near and dear to my heart! I get so bored with the choices for ready made headbands. And, when I find unusual examples, they're typically much more than I want to spend. Your Hub has solved my headband dilemma! Thanks!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 18, 2012:

Thanks so much, Jamie! I really appreciate the links. I have linked your articles in a number of mine and will continue to do so. :)

Jamie Brock from Texas on August 18, 2012:

I have one word, WOW! I think you have covered everything here.. what a wonderful hub! I love fabric flowers too and you have covered every kind I've ever seen, I think. I love how you are incorporating the title into the photo too. Oh, I saw where you linked to my rhinestone bottles, thank you so much for that. I have linked to a few of your hubs in my past few hubs and will be linking more when I re-vamp a lot of them. Voting up and awesome :)

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 16, 2012:

Thanks so much, Glimmer! That's perfect.

Claudia Porter on August 16, 2012:

So useful randomcreative! I'm a quilter so I have loads of fabric scraps. I'm always looking for ideas to use them up.

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 16, 2012:

Thank you much, Julie!

Alissa, I love those flower headbands for little girls, too. They are perfect for baby girls, especially when they don't have much hair coming in yet. That would be so exciting if you had a girl. Who doesn't get excited about little girl clothes?

Alissa Roberts from Normandy, TN on August 16, 2012:

I love those big flower headbands on little girls! My friend always puts the cutest headbands on her little one and I always think if this baby is a girl I am going to learn how to make those things! So thank you for providing all these great tutorials - I may be needing them soon (fingers crossed!) :)

Blurter of Indiscretions from Clinton CT on August 16, 2012:

Great work. I'm going to share this on twitter and facebook!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 16, 2012:

Thanks, Your Cousins! If you don't want to use a glue gun, fabric glue or even tacky glue will work just fine. You're right that this would make a great family reunion project for the girls.

Your Cousins from Atlanta, GA on August 16, 2012:

Good hub. I'd like to make that rosette headband, if I can get my glue gun skills up to par. This is a great craft for girls at our family reunion. Thanks for the instructions!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 16, 2012:

Thanks, Tammy! You can definitely apply a lot of these ideas to many different kinds of hair accessories.

That's awesome, Sharkye. :) You'll have to give it a try sometime.

Jayme Kinsey from Oklahoma on August 16, 2012:

This is great! Plenty of information. I never thought about making something as small as a headband before, but now I am really interested in the idea. Thanks for sharing!

Tammy from North Carolina on August 16, 2012:

Great hub! I loove new hairbows for my little one. I really love the rolled fabric flowers too. Great resources for hair accessories!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on August 16, 2012:

Now you have lots of tutorials for those flowers, Ann!

Thanks, Carol! I'm glad that I was able to put together something so comprehensive.

carol stanley from Arizona on August 16, 2012:

Wow! This is really a great hub and lots of work on your part. You covered everything about headbands. Great instructions and photos. I am ready to try one. Thanks for sharing this great hub. Voted UP.

Ann1Az2 from Orange, Texas on August 15, 2012:

Always want to know how people made those cool fabric flowers. Thanks for sharing this!

Vote up.

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