Click on the circus clown birthday party hat template below to enlarge and download it.
This free printable birthday party hat template features yellow polka dots on a red background, five circus clowns and a few clown cars thrown in for good measure. If you never thought you could make your own party hats, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how easy these are to construct:
(Update: 1-8-11: You can find more detailed instructions and five other designs on my printable birthday hats hub.) Print as many of the hats in color on 8 1/2″ x 11″ paper as you need, using either your own printer or a digital printing service. Plain paper actually works well for this project, but you might also want to try thin card stock. Whatever you use, just make sure the colors look good on it. If the paper is too porous or thin, the colors will look flat.
Once the hats are printed, cut along the outer edge of the hat shape. Fold the flap along the line so that it faces the back (blank) side of the hat and then use either a glue stick or some tape (I prefer the glue stick method, because I find it easier to work with) to affix the flap to the other side of the hat. Once you align the flap and the other edge so they bottom out at the same place, gently squeeze the seam and rub your fingers up and down it for a few seconds, or until the glue holds the seam. Once it’s dry, you can round out the seam, so the hat will be ready to wear. Then, just poke small holes where the white holes are indicated on the template and use yarn or string long enough to tie under the chin of the child who will be wearing it. You can also use thin elastic strung from one side to the other, using a child as a model so you know how long to make it so it fits without being uncomfortable.
If you like, you can also embellish the hat with streamers that come out of the top and/or touches of glitter glue to make some of the small details of the circus clown design pop.
Just click the hat template below to see and download a larger size:
If the template doesn’t download right away, right-click on it with your mouse (if you have a PC) or control-click it (if you have a Mac) to save it to your hard drive.
Click below for more party hat designs, detailed instructions and additional tips for making these hats look extra special:
I have lots of other birthday party hats and matching birthday cupcake toppers in the works, so please follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest, or sign up via e-mail or RSS, to be notified when they’re posted. You can do any of those by clicking the buttons at the top of the right column.
Credits: Thanks to Trina Clark, Clipart4Resale and DigiscrapKits.com for the adorable circus clowns used in this template design, and to FreePhotoshop.org for the polka dot pattern.