How to Make a Shepherd Costume Headpiece

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No shepherd costume is complete without a simple fabric headpiece. Fortunately, they’re very easy to make. You can make a tied headpiece from a small towel or piece of fabric, or a larger wrap-around headpiece from a yard of fabric or a flour-sack kitchen towel. Tied headpieces work well on anybody, while wrap-around headpieces look especially good on female characters. You can make either style of shepherd headpiece smaller or larger depending on whether it’s for an adult or a small child.

Things You'll Need

  • Small towel or 1/2 yard of fabric for a tied headpiece
  • 1 yard of fabric for a wrap-around headpiece
  • Ribbon, cording or a long narrow strip of fabric
  • Scissors
  • Safety pins
  • Sewing machine (optional)
  • Iron (optional)

Make a Tied Shepherd Headpiece

  • Cut a piece of fabric about 24 inches long and 20 inches wide, or use a small towel.

  • Iron the fabric or towel if needed.

  • Hem the edges of the fabric by folding each edge over about 1/4 inch, then folding it over 1/4 inch again and stitching along the edge. Or leave the edges as they are and let them ravel for a more rustic shepherd look.

  • Place the towel or piece of fabric over the head so that one end slightly covers the forehead and the rest hangs over the back of the head.

  • Tie a piece of ribbon, cording or a long narrow strip of fabric around the head to hold the towel or fabric in place.

Make a Wrap-Around Shepherd Headpiece

  • Trim off the selvages (unprinted edges) of the fabric and iron the fabric if needed.

  • Cut a square of fabric about 36 inches wide.

  • Hem the edges of the fabric by folding each edge over about 1/4 inch, then folding it over 1/4 inch again and stitching along the edge. Or leave the edges as they are and let them ravel for a more rustic shepherd look.

  • Place the fabric on the head so that one edge slightly covers the forehead and the rest hangs over the back of the head.

  • Wrap the corners of the fabric around the head and overlap them under the chin.

  • Carefully pin the corners together from the underside of the fabric, so that the safety pin doesn’t show.

Tips & Warnings

  • Dollar stores can be good resources for inexpensive plain or checkered towels.
  • Remember the shepherd headpiece doesn’t have to be perfect to look the part.
  • Use caution with safety pins, sewing machines and irons.

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