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Charity Hat Projects for Cancer Patients

Updated on May 27, 2016

Make a Tough Cancer Experience Lighter with Your Donation of a Hat

Do you know a cancer patient who'd like a hat? There's all sorts of ways in which you can help them. Check out the list below and choose the one to support.

When I lost my hair to chemotherapy my scalp was tender, inflamed and marked with outbreaks so it was important for me to keep it covered. My oncologist's office referred me to the cancer center's care center, where a lovely woman treated me like a precious jewel.

She told me about their resources and asked about my lifestyle before she selected several hat styles, from out of sight. She is the one who taught me to wear a scarf under a brimmed hat. The scarf, a soft one that's comfortable to the touch, anchors the hat, if the fit is right, so the hat stays put even without hair.

Her examples sparked my imagination, and before long I was able to combine my new hats and scarves for the looks I wanted, and the shade I needed, during the summer of my treatment.

Organizations below offer either hats or patterns for making hats. Join a group of crafters and organize them to make or buy a batch of hats from the selections below, for your favorite cancer care center.

The drawing is a detail from my Chemo Journal Drawings, and is copyrighted. No use permitted, but you can buy it on all those typical things at WhipCancer Please click on "It'll Grow Back."

Crochet Bev's Bear Beanie

This whimsical hat will cover a child's bald head and make the tot laugh too.

Bev's Country Cottage has an easy crochet project for children, for donations to a childrens' hospital, a cancer center, a homeless shelter, or a neighbor family.

Size directions are for little kids. If you are a regular crocheter you can easily turn this out in an afternoon or a day.

Pattern Directions at Bear Beanie

Learn How to Crochet in Your Group - crochet is totable - add a few stitches after coffee

Teach Yourself VISUALLY Crochet
Teach Yourself VISUALLY Crochet

This is a good teaching tool because it shows you how to hold the hook and how to hold the yarn. There's nothing like pictures to show the story.


Knit Your Stitch in this Poll

Do You Knit or Crochet or Sew?

See results

Knots of Love Donates Your Handmade Hats to Cancer Patients

Knots of Love/ You Can Help Here! Fill out the Knots of Love Donation Form and set another hat on another child's head!

A Kid Always Feels Better in a Hat!
A Kid Always Feels Better in a Hat!

Request a Hat for a Patient

A kid always feels better in a hat!

Hats Off For Cancer supports child cancer patients with hair loss, to ease their experience of this tough disease.

I can't think of a better way to get your favorite Young Cancer Patient outdoors (protection from a sunburned scalp, or warmth in the winter).

Who doesn't love a gift, and especially a surprise gift when we are very vulnerable. Tell your young friend they are special as a daisy. You can request the style of hat and tell the organization more about your individual so they can make the best selection for the person. request a hat

I had cancer-caused hair loss, and I'm not a kid, but I can imagine what these guys feel like without their hair, and how better they feel in hats.

OK, those were my kids in 1976, and the hats make all the difference, wouldn't you say?

Make the Child's Lion Hat

Ryzellon uploaded this fancy headgear photograph and pattern at Ryzellon made the steps basic and simple.

It can be customized - that is it's charming feature, and it's easy to picture the patients at your local cancer hospital, cheered up when they see another patient in the same Cartoony Hat

Haley Anderson, a St. Louis girl, knits hats for a good cause - she tells us all about it

This young girl comes from a family where philanthropy is a part of their heritage. What an inspiration!

Here's a Favorite Way to Learn to Knit

Make these quick dishcloths as you learn to knit in a jiffy.

Then move on to a beanie.

Knit Fast

Versatile Cancer Cap is Easy to Make

doubles as an earmuff band and a neck warmer

Some cancer patients lose every bit of hair all over their heads, even eyelashes, and others keep a scattering of hair that continues to grow, leaving them looking especially vulnerable.

These caps give the kids a choice to wear as a hat, or to roll and wear as a fat ear-band. Simple to follow steps to make this handy cap for a cancer patient are illustrated with photos from beginning to end. Directions here donates to Cancer Patients

ChemoCaps is comprised of a group of knitters who make hand-knit caps for cancer patients. You can join the group and help those who really need a healing touch, a gift of a hat. It was started in honor of a young woman cancer patient who lived from 1975 - 2000, by her mother. Countless cancer patients have been the recipients of these gifts.

Please organize a chemocaps group in your neighborhood, and enjoy companionship and the knowledge that you are bringing happiness to special people who may feel vulnerable due to their hair loss. Find patterns on the website, donated by Print and share the patterns with a group of knitters. ChemoCaps encourages school groups, scouts and other young people's groups to undertake this project.

The hat shown is from a pattern you can purchase at buy your pattern for $5.95.

Make Fleece Cancer Caps

Kids can help you make these caps as a family project. Pre-teens and teenagers will be proud of their prowess in making the hats because they are so simple, the project build self-confidence, and a notion of charity. Directions here

Simple Steps:

1. lay fleece fabric out on a large counter or table

2. cut the rectangle of fabric

3. measure, mark, trim

4. sew one seam at the side

5. sew across the top

6. turn right side out and sew hem

Turbans Make Projects

you can even wear them to bed

Turbans look both exotic and glamorous, with vestiges of the '40s, when they are all dressed up. Yet they can be made of humble fabrics and be the perfect bedtime accessory during chemo or just during winter. Turbans made from this pattern and directions can be whipped up in no time.

My suggestion is to plan a turban-crafting party with a group of friends, followed by/preceded by a potluck lunch. Ask each partygoer to bring a piece of fleece, with trim, in her/his color of choice. Be sure to have large needles and colored threads available for adding the trim.

And look through your broken and unused jewelry to see if you have anything suitable to make a statement at the front of the turban. If you have a BeDazzle tool with studs and jewels, this could be a fine opportunity for using it to secure sparkly trim.

This turban is cut from three rectangles of knit fabric. The pleated effect is made by sewing three tucks in the back of the hat. The front can be jeweled up by adding beads or a pin, or even a small silk or fabric flower. Maryen Rogers© provided the project directions at pattern

Cotton Stretch Under-caps in 18 Colors

donate one in each color to the cancer center

These undercaps have deep crowns that come down to the eyebrows. Pop on an undercap and wear a brimmed straw or fabric hat over it!

Presto! you've created a stylish and secure head covering that does not draw attention to your condition of chemotherapy or alopecia or other cause of hair loss.

The caps can also be worn alone, or with a scarf folded and tied on at one side. Use a large scarf for a dramatic wrap.

See ChemoWraps for tips on how to wrap a scarf. Follow the same instructions over the cap. ChemoWraps is at ChemoWraps

A No-Sew Fleece Hat - how Nifty!

MommyDani2 demonstrates how to make this cap. She is a crafter, not a seamstress. She doesn't even sew! She uses a product called Liquid Stitch. She washes these hats in the washer and the hems hold up. She feels comfortable knowing that if a bit of hem should open up through use or washing, she can always apply a dab of glue to close it up again, in the future.

Enjoy learning from this crafty mom, while her toddler walks across her project, and she continues without a blink! This makes an adorable, fun style hat.

Shop for Fleece the Easy Way - save a bundle and sew a bunch of turbans

Crafty Cuts 1-1/2-Yard Fleece Print, Tie Dye Burst
Crafty Cuts 1-1/2-Yard Fleece Print, Tie Dye Burst

Bold and beautiful hats add a spark of confidence for a cancer patient.


Enjoy Humor With My Hats

See how I wear some of my Summer Hats!Funny Hats

Hat art from a Breast Cancer Survivor

Hot Hats & Caps!

Gift Hats for Cancer Center Patients - ready made hats for those who want to give, but don't craft

Fabric or knit hats and caps feel best on a tender scalp, and stay in place - no fear of the wind blowing it off and exposing the head. Straw hats can still feel comfortable when lined. Some lightweight woven fabric or straw hats can be secured to an undercap, or soft scarf by a long large-headed pin.

Try assembling a dozen or two dozen hats in various styles, and deliver them to a cancer support group, along with a selection of soft scarves and undercaps.

Parkhurst Savannah Cotton Sun Hat (Ivory)
Parkhurst Savannah Cotton Sun Hat (Ivory)

A Parkhurst brimmed cotton sunhat is what I wore during chemo. I loved it and so did everyone who saw it. I wore it for a couple years, until I left it at a friend's house one day on a trip. Time to get another one.


Please Share Cancer Hat Ideas

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    • sha-ron profile image

      sha-ron 3 years ago

      This is a great article. The funny thing is I just wrote a lens on making crafts in your spare time and donating them to charity. weird eh.

    • DANCING COWGIRL profile image

      Dancing Cowgirl Design 4 years ago from Texas

      These are great. I was just researching a charity to help out. It donates cowboy hats to kids with cancer.

    • VioletteRose LM profile image

      VioletteRose LM 4 years ago

      Very nice lens.

    • sha-ron profile image

      sha-ron 4 years ago

      Lots of great ideas for a good cause

    • shadowfast7 profile image

      Sure Temp 4 years ago


    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      @Susan Zutautas: Best to you. It's really rewarding to know your every stitch counts, isn't it. Thanks.

    • Susan Zutautas profile image

      Susan Zutautas 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      In January I plan to start making hats for the hospital that I'm currently going to for chemo and radiation treatments. Love your projects.!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      @DeborahDian: Such generous people have developed ideas for others to do good too.

    • DeborahDian profile image

      Deborah Carr 4 years ago from Orange County, California

      These are such wonderful projects!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      @GrimRascal: Are you ready to try your hand at knitting or crocheting, like Roosevelt Grier does? He's quite a character, with his bulk and yet his tender skills in needlework.

    • GrimRascal profile image

      GrimRascal 4 years ago from Overlord's Castle

      This is really heart-warming.

    • LluviaDeArte profile image

      LluviaDeArte 4 years ago

      Really nice lens, thank you for writing it. It is very inspirational and the hats are great!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      @smine27: Thanks smine27, it looks like you're a hat person too.

    • smine27 profile image

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      Some of these hats would make a great gift for just about anyone.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      @richardrose: Thank you. Since I was a new Muslim at the time I was curious to discover what styles of headcoverings I could uncover that would be dual purpose. A tender scalp needs special care.

    • profile image

      richardrose 4 years ago

      Really good idea and a great gift for people going through this. Bet they would really appreciate having a nice selection to choose from. Really great lens

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      @shellys-space: Thanks so much, and I hope your MIL gets lots of green nutrition to support her new hair growth. It's such a trying time. Those chemicals wreak havoc on the body.

    • shellys-space profile image

      Shelly Sellers 4 years ago from Midwest U.S.A.

      I am thankful my MIL didn't loose all her hair. Her hair is already very thin and she has been taking some medicine for cancer, but didn't have to go through a complete chemo program after she had both breasts removed. You have made a very inspiring page, thanks for sharing!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      @DebW07: DebW07, how true. thanks for commenting.

    • profile image

      DebW07 4 years ago

      Wonderful lens, very inspirational! Giving to others is our greatest reward to ourselves.

    • erbeaz profile image

      erbeaz 4 years ago

      Your lens is an inspiration. Love the variety of hats.

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 4 years ago from Scotland

      I crochet for my friends charity she set up before she passed away from Cancer, the creativness of some of these headcoverings is fantastic! Great for the kids as they love the hats that are a little bit different :)

    • Michelllle profile image

      Michelllle 4 years ago

      Wonderful lens. Beautiful caps!

    • profile image

      miaponzo 4 years ago

      What a wonderful idea!!!!!! Also I LOVE some of the amazing hats, caps, turbans etc you have here! So cute!

    • CoolFool83 profile image

      CoolFool83 4 years ago

      Such a thoughtful idea!

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 4 years ago

      This could help so many people. Blessed!

    • choosehappy profile image

      Vikki 5 years ago from US

      What a wonderful idea and project. Thanks for the information!

    • captainj88 profile image

      Leah J. Hileman 5 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

      I'm glad to see where I can donate hats; I work on afghans mostly, but I always have extra yarn and this looks like a fabulous way to use it up and be a blessing to someone else at the same time.

    • profile image

      dellgirl 5 years ago

      I love your lens itâs very inspiring, it's also really helpful. Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      ann73098 5 years ago

      The hats are just a great gift. Thanks for the idea.

    • CoolFool83 profile image

      CoolFool83 5 years ago

      Such a thoughtful lense. Really enjoyed.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I sure know the need for a hat as I had been with friends who had cancer. Good of you to highlight this.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 5 years ago from Colorado

      I absolutely love these hats and what they mean for those who have an intimate relationship with cancer. Though my mother is in treatment for cancer (thyroid now and breast cancer previously), it seems amazing that she has never lost her hair. What a beautiful way to express TLC for anyone who must deal with cancer and its effects. Blessings to you.

    • verymary profile image

      Mary 5 years ago from Chicago area

      wonderful lens!

    • ClassyGals profile image

      Cynthia Davis 5 years ago from Pittsburgh

      Angel Blessings** Wonderful charity idea.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      @pawpaw911: Condolences on your loss. I know it's heavy. I appreciate that you found your way here, to express yourself. Thank you.

    • profile image

      pawpaw911 5 years ago

      Very important work. Thanks for doing this page on Cancer hats. We lost a family member to breast cancer Sunday. She made good use of some donated hats.

    • profile image

      msseiboi 5 years ago

      Great ideas which can be done at home ..thanks for sharing

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      Thanks for your comments and concern. Turns out it is another type of item of unknown origin, that bears watching, but not cancerous, praise God.

    • LynetteBell profile image

      LynetteBell 5 years ago from Christchurch, New Zealand

      Nice lens here...I hope things are going ok for you. I notice you have another cancer scare.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      Today I face another cancer scare, since there's a sizeable what mass on my spine. Prayers appreciated.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      @Ladyeaglefeather: It's always interesting to learn how others paved the paths before I even knew about the needs.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      @Gypzeerose: Yes, I feel much of my chemo pain every time I think of it too, and that's the motivator to help others. Bless the people who put together the ideas.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      @Ladyeaglefeather: Isn't it lovely how so many people have taken hair-loss into account in their hat and pattern designs!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Knowing first-hand how I felt when I received hats, during chemo, it was a pleasure to put this lens together.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Encouragement is its own reward. Thanks for spending time here.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks to the wonderful people who created the patterns, and to folks like you, more cancer patients will have gifts of hats.

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 5 years ago

      This lens brought bad memories for me, as I thought of my own cancer and chemotherapy. Nonetheless, it saved my life! You put a lot of work into this lens and it will help a lot of people: Angel Blessed!

    • goo2eyes lm profile image

      goo2eyes lm 5 years ago

      after the chemo, kids would need something to cover their heads. can't expect them to wear turbans so hats are much better. angel blessings for this charitable cause.

    • profile image

      Ladyeaglefeather 5 years ago

      wow, you do some much to help. Thank-you for this lens. I didn't know, about this.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 6 years ago

      @blue22d: It's wonderful to be one small link in a huge chain. When someone shares a crafty pattern, they really start the chain.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 6 years ago

      @sousababy: Yes, those knitters are really grand. For some, it's a full-time retirement vocation, and what would the wearers do without them!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 6 years ago

      @julieannbrady: Thanks. I've subsequently found this same hat pattern at many websites, so I can tell it's popular.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 6 years ago

      @sarahrk lm: Bless you, Auntie! He will remember your loving act long after chemo ends, each time he puts on a hat.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 6 years ago

      @Monika Weise: Four is a huge number of cancer survivors in one family. They are blessed to have your care.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 6 years ago

      @sarahrk lm: Way to go, Auntie! He'll remember that loving act long after his chemo ends!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      great work your doing here, enjoyed seeing how you help others.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      What a wonderful opportunity to serve those who are experiencing cancer and such an excellent presentation of resources. I love how the hats are so varied for age and for personality and style....blessed!

    • blue22d profile image

      blue22d 6 years ago

      Oh the hats for the children, how wonderful. I can do that! I can crochet them. Bless you Papier. Your lens will help others.

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 6 years ago

      I have always had the utmost respect and admiration for those who knit caps for babies at the hospitals where I have worked. This is such a fabulous resource. I am not a knitter but I really love to purchase these for others. Thank you so much for sharing.

      Stay well,


    • profile image

      julieannbrady 6 years ago

      Ah, I sure do love what you have presented ... very inspirational ... very cute too: Crochet Bev's Bear Beanie !!

    • sarahrk lm profile image

      sarahrk lm 6 years ago

      I recently knitted about a dozen hats for my 18 year old nephew who was being treated for cancer. It felt good to do it and he would choose the colors.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 6 years ago

      @Monika Weise: thanks Monika, and everyone for your responses. I can't imagine having four family members who have had cancer, but it really makes the rise in cancer cases very personal.

    • HealthfulMD profile image

      Kirsti A. Dyer 6 years ago from Northern California

      Lots of great resources.

    • Monika Weise profile image

      Monika Weise 6 years ago from Indianapolis, IN USA

      Thank you so much for doing this lens. Four of my family members have had cancer and I really appreciate this lens.

    • hlkljgk profile image

      hlkljgk 6 years ago from Western Mass

      thanks for the resources.

    • Faye Rutledge profile image

      Faye Rutledge 6 years ago from Concord VA

      This is a great idea. :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      Thanks, this was a helpful site. Many good ideas!