Make: Projects


Make your silent hat sing with your headphones in the fabric over your ears!


Winter is finally here in Massachusetts. While digging in the ‘Hats’ plastic tub today, I happened upon a flappy hat from last year. SantaMaker recently brought me some cheap headphones, and a few amplified speakers too (but those are for another project). Tonight turned out to be the time to merge the two into a HeadphoneHat. I’ve been thinking of the Rock Star Headphones project in Fashioning Technology as an inspiration for a way to take music on the go. There is a similar project in Diana Eng’s book Fashion Geek.

First thing was to gather all the stuff: Headphones, a flappy hat, a nice sharp pair of shears, a seam ripper, some thread and a needle were all this project called for.

You can view my photos of making the first HeadphoneHat on Flickr.


Step #1:

  • Gather the supplies:
  • A flappy hat
  • Headphones with speakers that are smaller than the flaps (not earbuds)
  • Scissors or shears
  • Seam ripper
  • Thread to match the hat
  • Needle

Step #2:

  • Open up the seam on the back side of the flap
  • I used a seam ripper, but you could carefully cut with scissors or a utility knife.
  • You don't want the bottom to be open, as the speakers will fall out.
  • You don't want the front edge of the flap to have the hole, as it will look ugly with the wire showing forward.
  • Usually, flappy hats have the flaps slightly to the rear of the hat.

Step #3:

  • Test to see if you can fit the speaker into the hole you just made in the seam.
  • If not, open the seam up a bit.
  • Pop the speaker in and position it.
  • Make sure the speaker is facing the inside of the hat.

Step #4:

  • Reinforce the seam at both ends of the opening you made.
  • Test to see if you can get the headphones out.
  • If your opening is too narrow, rip out one of your reinforcements and make the hole a little wider.
  • Leaving the hole a little small is good so the speakers don't fall out.

Step #5:

  • Try out your hat.
  • You may need to position the speakers so they sit over your ears consistently.
  • You could add some sticky backed hook and loop to the back of the speakers.
  • You may be able to use just the hook side and have it stick to the fabric of the flap.

Step #6:

  • Use your hat.
  • Show it to your friends.
  • Try it with your phone.
  • Ask your friends what features you might add.
  • Make another.
  • Give it away or sell it.
Chris Connors

Chris Connors

Making things is the best way to learn about our world.