How to Make a Fascinator
What better excuse to make a fascinator than the start of Royal Ascot?
The great thing about making fascinators is that you can use just about anything to make them, so it’s a perfect use for all those spare feathers, buttons, beads, ribbons and scraps of material. Once you have decided on your type of hair fastening, your design and your colour scheme then it’s all about constructing and decorating!
1. Turn one of your base discs upside down and position your hair slide top side down against the base. Using a black thread sew the slide into place.
When sewing with threads on fascinators it is sometimes easier to double your thread so as to make the sewing more secure.
2. Turn the base disc the right way round and sew the black feather fan into place using a black thread. Make sure that you are placing the material part of the feathers at the end of the disc closest to your face, so that the feathers are going in the direction away from your face.
Keep putting the fascinator into your hair to check you are happy with the direction all the items sit and how they lie when it is on your head.
3. Fold the one metre of black ribbon in half (so it becomes 50 cm) and sew either by hand or with a sewing machine down both sides of the ribbon with black thread. This makes the ribbon have the same pattern on both sides. Fold the ribbon lightly from the middle into loops and secure onto the fascinator covering the black feather fan edge by sewing with black thread.
4. Attach the second base disc by its edge, using black thread to the back of the now bottom disc (allow them to overlap so the bottom disc fits into the top disc). Don’t worry if your sewing is really noticeable as you will be covering this up later!
5. Gather together the small bunches of flowers and the black feathers with diamantes. Knot black thread around them to keep them together and then wrap the thread round many times until they feel firmly bound and knot into place. You can coat the thread with PVA glue if you would like to create a firmer fixing. Allow to dry.
If you have a cat then keep a close eye on your feathers so your cat doesn’t steal your feathers to play with them!
6. Cut the white stems in line with the bottom of your thread and use the firmer black stem of the black feathers to wrap around the thread and white stems to keep everything more securely in place. Don’t worry if this looks messy – it will be covered up shortly.
7. You might recognise this bit as you are about to repeat step 3 but with the white ribbon and thread. Fold the one metre of white ribbon in half (so it becomes 50 cm) and sew either by hand or with a sewing machine down both sides of the ribbon with white thread.
Fold the ribbon lightly from the middle into loops and sew them together with white thread. Hold your looped ribbon against the base of the flowers and feather from step 6, covering the thread and stems.
8. You need to have patience with the next bit as it’s a juggling act holding everything together, but stick with it! Use black thread to attach the flowers, feathers and ribbon to the bottom of the top disc.
When attaching the ribbon make sure you catch the back of the ribbon so as not to show the thread. You can wrap the thread in amongst the flowers and feathers through to the other side of the disc many times until you are happy it is all securely attached.
9. As a finishing touch you can use dress making pins in the ribbon and this will also help secure the ribbon.
If using pins as a decoration or fastening then make sure they are securely in place with no sharp edges sticking out and they do not go into the bottom of the fascinator which attaches to your head.