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How to Make a Hat for Barbie Out of K-Cups

Updated on June 19, 2013
Barbie looks super glamorous in a navy hat made of a discarded K-cup.
Barbie looks super glamorous in a navy hat made of a discarded K-cup. | Source

Are you crazy about Barbie? Do you enjoy making cool things out of unusual materials? Do you like coffee? Why not combine these interests and create accessories for your favorite Barbie dolls out of empty K-cups?

“Barbie hats from K-cups,” you say? “I’ve never heard of such a such a thing!” Of course you haven't heard of them -- I invented them! Stick with me because here’s how to save those used K-cups from being trashed… and use up your paper, fabric, or craft scraps in the bargain!

Barbie loves a good chapeau, so why not make her a full wardrobe of them?
Barbie loves a good chapeau, so why not make her a full wardrobe of them? | Source

Unlike crocheted hats, which while romantic-looking require time, patience, and skill with a needle, these Barbie K-cup hats are easy and fast, taking only a few minutes… but your dolls will be the belles of the block.


Click thumbnail to view full-size
A jumble of clean K-cups and Mini Moo containers will make lovely Barbie hatsThis type of plastic takes permanent marker color beautifullySharp scissors (smaller is better) and a glue gun are neededPretty ribbons will provide charming hat decorationsWired flowers or leftover favor materials can also be used to decorate Barbie hats
A jumble of clean K-cups and Mini Moo containers will make lovely Barbie hats
A jumble of clean K-cups and Mini Moo containers will make lovely Barbie hats | Source
This type of plastic takes permanent marker color beautifully
This type of plastic takes permanent marker color beautifully | Source
Sharp scissors (smaller is better) and a glue gun are needed
Sharp scissors (smaller is better) and a glue gun are needed | Source
Pretty ribbons will provide charming hat decorations
Pretty ribbons will provide charming hat decorations | Source
Wired flowers or leftover favor materials can also be used to decorate Barbie hats
Wired flowers or leftover favor materials can also be used to decorate Barbie hats | Source

Materials Needed for K-Cup Barbie Hats

You will need:

  • Clean K-cups, and the more, the merrier! If you don’t have a Keurig or pod coffeemaker of your own, ask around… people will be happy to hand over their used K-cups. Leave a note asking people not to throw them away – in fact, I did this at my office.
  • Small, sharp scissors
  • Pretty craft supplies – ribbons, feathers, foils, beads, lace, mesh, scrapbook paper, fabric, tiny bows, glitter, wallpaper samples, flowers, crystals, faux fur… basically, whatever strikes your fancy!
  • A glue gun, white glue, or Mod Podge
  • Permanent markers, like Sharpies (optional)


Click thumbnail to view full-size
Place your marker on a flat surface... … then turn the K-cup slowly, leaving a perfect circle mark on it!This shows three different drawn heights, but use any height you like.Don’t forget to poke the coffee hole closed!Cut around your mark…… and save the rest of the cup if you want a brim. These are the three heights, cut.Then snip the rest of the plastic from the thicker edge, as closely to that edge as possible. Place the hat top back into the "brim"…… and decide if you want it at an angle or straight. This one will be straight.Overlap the top and bottom "brim" pieces around the hat…… and hot glue the brim pieces into place, creating small circles. Insert the hats into their brims…… and glue into place. I use Mod Podge for this part so I can maneuver the hat and brim to exactly where I want it. Behold! Three adorable K-cup Barbie hats of varying heights, just waiting to be decorated!
Place your marker on a flat surface...
Place your marker on a flat surface... | Source
… then turn the K-cup slowly, leaving a perfect circle mark on it!
… then turn the K-cup slowly, leaving a perfect circle mark on it! | Source
This shows three different drawn heights, but use any height you like.
This shows three different drawn heights, but use any height you like. | Source
Don’t forget to poke the coffee hole closed!
Don’t forget to poke the coffee hole closed! | Source
Cut around your mark…
Cut around your mark… | Source
… and save the rest of the cup if you want a brim.
… and save the rest of the cup if you want a brim. | Source
 These are the three heights, cut.
These are the three heights, cut. | Source
Then snip the rest of the plastic from the thicker edge, as closely to that edge as possible.
Then snip the rest of the plastic from the thicker edge, as closely to that edge as possible. | Source
Place the hat top back into the "brim"…
Place the hat top back into the "brim"… | Source
… and decide if you want it at an angle or straight. This one will be straight.
… and decide if you want it at an angle or straight. This one will be straight. | Source
Overlap the top and bottom "brim" pieces around the hat…
Overlap the top and bottom "brim" pieces around the hat… | Source
… and hot glue the brim pieces into place, creating small circles.
… and hot glue the brim pieces into place, creating small circles. | Source
 Insert the hats into their brims…
Insert the hats into their brims… | Source
… and glue into place. I use Mod Podge for this part so I can maneuver the hat and brim to exactly where I want it.
… and glue into place. I use Mod Podge for this part so I can maneuver the hat and brim to exactly where I want it. | Source
Behold! Three adorable K-cup Barbie hats of varying heights, just waiting to be decorated!
Behold! Three adorable K-cup Barbie hats of varying heights, just waiting to be decorated! | Source

Making Barbie Hats from Used K-Cups

  1. Measure anywhere from .25 inch to .75 inch around from the flat end of the K-cup using a marker or pen. The easiest way to do this is to place your marker on a table or low book, then hold it in place while slowly turning the K-cup. You will get a perfect line with no mess.
  2. Carefully cut the rest off. Save the other part if you want to add a brim.
  3. Press the tiny round piece (where the coffee came out) back into place (it doesn’t need to be perfect, especially if you plan to cover the top of the hat).
  4. Load the hat up with pretty bits using white glue, or draw directly on it.
  5. Alternatively, cover it with wallpaper samples to match your wallpaper Barbie outfit!
  6. Leave as is for a cloche-style hat, or embellish it with a brim made from the other end of the K-cup if you like. The diameter of the base of the hat is about 1 inch and 7/16ths.

For a brim, cut off the edge of the K-cup, then carefully and with a hot glue gun, fit it around the base of your hat and glue the "brim" together. Then attach to the base of the hat. I use Mod Podge for this part, because it gives you a little more time to gently maneuver the brim exactly where you want it. I think hot glue dries too quickly for this.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Simple foil confetti adorns this K-cup Barbie hatK-cup bridal headpiece for Barbie using tulle This black top hat is suitable for either Barbie or Ken!Don't overlook those boxes of candy you've received from admirers! This golden hat was cut from the foil insert of a box of Lindt chocolates.Colored with Sharpies and pressed with the side of my hand, these pillbox K-cup hats look like they've been watercolored.Turquoise feathers make this K-cup hat a knockout!A navy blue hat with matching rose is sure to please everyone.This simple K-cup crown is begging to be decorated.Plain white Barbie K-cup hat with brimSimple Barbie K-cup hat with narrow ribbonK-cup Barbie hat with pineapple. Philip Treacy, eat your heart out!Upholstered K-cup Barbie hat will side ruffleK-cup Barbie pillbox hat with flowered wallpaperK-cup Barbie hat with sunflower ribbonK-cup Barbie hat with wallpaper flower
Simple foil confetti adorns this K-cup Barbie hat
Simple foil confetti adorns this K-cup Barbie hat | Source
K-cup bridal headpiece for Barbie using tulle
K-cup bridal headpiece for Barbie using tulle | Source
This black top hat is suitable for either Barbie or Ken!
This black top hat is suitable for either Barbie or Ken! | Source
Don't overlook those boxes of candy you've received from admirers! This golden hat was cut from the foil insert of a box of Lindt chocolates.
Don't overlook those boxes of candy you've received from admirers! This golden hat was cut from the foil insert of a box of Lindt chocolates. | Source
Colored with Sharpies and pressed with the side of my hand, these pillbox K-cup hats look like they've been watercolored.
Colored with Sharpies and pressed with the side of my hand, these pillbox K-cup hats look like they've been watercolored. | Source
Turquoise feathers make this K-cup hat a knockout!
Turquoise feathers make this K-cup hat a knockout! | Source
A navy blue hat with matching rose is sure to please everyone.
A navy blue hat with matching rose is sure to please everyone. | Source
This simple K-cup crown is begging to be decorated.
This simple K-cup crown is begging to be decorated. | Source
Plain white Barbie K-cup hat with brim
Plain white Barbie K-cup hat with brim | Source
Simple Barbie K-cup hat with narrow ribbon
Simple Barbie K-cup hat with narrow ribbon | Source
K-cup Barbie hat with pineapple. Philip Treacy, eat your heart out!
K-cup Barbie hat with pineapple. Philip Treacy, eat your heart out! | Source
Upholstered K-cup Barbie hat will side ruffle
Upholstered K-cup Barbie hat will side ruffle | Source
K-cup Barbie pillbox hat with flowered wallpaper
K-cup Barbie pillbox hat with flowered wallpaper | Source
K-cup Barbie hat with sunflower ribbon
K-cup Barbie hat with sunflower ribbon | Source
K-cup Barbie hat with wallpaper flower
K-cup Barbie hat with wallpaper flower | Source

Decorating Barbie Hats

If you’re gifted with a pen or prefer to doodle rather than glue, here are some suggestions:

  • Flowers
  • Stripes
  • A contrasting bow
  • Checkerboard
  • A crosshatch design
  • Color-blocking in the style of Piet Mondrian

For those who like trims, I suggest:

  • Cutting a piece of beautiful ribbon and trimming the brim, for a picture-style hat
  • Covering it in glitter
  • Feathers could create a fluffy look
  • Rope-style trim makes a natural brim without even trying

Use your imagination… the sky’s the limit! What about a bridal headpiece, or period-style hats? Cut off a piece of the leftover cup side for a baseball-style brim, or snip the edging in an unusual pattern. The possibilities are endless.


"This feathered hat matches my eyes!"
"This feathered hat matches my eyes!" | Source
"This sleek one reminds me of Catwoman. I'm buying it!"
"This sleek one reminds me of Catwoman. I'm buying it!" | Source

Things to Remember about K-Cup Barbie Hats

Barbies will larger hairdos will require a wider hat, so measure accordingly!

Design your hats with a wide enough brim so you don’t need to pin it into place. If you’ve left an very narrow brim for style, just pin it through the hole in the cup where the coffee came out. Pin it directly into Barbie’s soft and squishy head. (She is very resilient!)

Play around with proportion – use cleaned Mini Moo cups for fascinators, or cut out interesting shapes from the inserts of chocolate boxes!

If you want to get very fancy, consider spray-painting the K-cups before applying finishing touches.

Or, “paint” the K-cups with nail polish, then press an interesting pattern into them with toothpicks, mesh, paper clips, or another material. Be sure to let them dry before letting Barbie wear them! You certainly don’t want to ruin your hard work with Barbie’s errant hairs.

Probably the best thing about these Barbie hats is that because they are meant for a doll. they do not need to be sensible. So let your imagination run wild!

Ideas for Play with Barbie Hats

  • Set up a hat or accessory shop
  • Match a hat to a clutch purse or shoulder bag!
  • Stage a hat fashion show (Barbie’s first job was “Teenage Fashion Model”, after all!)

This is a great idea for kids, too. Just be sure to prepare the cups for them, and pre-cut the craft materials if they are too young for sharp scissors. Use this idea for a Barbie dress-up game or party activity!


What To Do with Leftover Coffee Grounds

Want to do something with those grounds? If you can’t bear to throw them away, take them into the shower with you and rub down your extremities with them. It will provide them with a quick scrub and the caffeine will make them tingle!

Would you make hats out of K-cups?

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How to Clean Used K-Cups

After cleaning out about thirty or so of these K-cups, I've gotten the prep work down to a science:

  • Remove the foil cover, all in one piece if possible. I poke a finger through the center hole to make it easier, then work around the edge.
  • Remove the coffee filter inside the K-cup
  • Wash with soap and water, then let dry

If you remove the foil cover and inner filter from the K-cup right after your drink has brewed, they will come off much more cleanly. I speculate that's due to the warmth of the glue after brewing.



"This one will be perfect for the Mardi Gras parade!"
"This one will be perfect for the Mardi Gras parade!" | Source

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    • theclevercat profile image
      Author

      Rachel Vega 3 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi , sandyrj! :)

      I'm so glad your brother saved his K-cups for you! That was sweet.

      Re: the thumbnails, you should be able to click on them and they pop open (I tried and it does work in various browsers), but if not then you can view the slideshow instead by hovering and clicking where it says "See all 40 photos", then moving back or forth as you need.

      Actually, it is there that I show how to cut the brim on a slight vertical angle, then glue together using your hat to check the width. Glue with hot glue (it totally works on this type of shiny plastic), then attach the main hat part.

      If you want to make an overhang on the hat or cut a wider or floppier "brim" from paper (as it sounds like), I would go ahead and use Mod Podge to set it up as it gives you a little more time to get the placing just right, which is important for crafty people like us. :)

      I really liked using wallpaper samples for the wackier hats, but you can use pretty much anything. Please let me know if you have other questions... and I'd love to see your finished products!!! :)

    • profile image

      sandyrj 3 years ago

      thanks so much! I knew there had to be a way to make hats so I've had my brother save his k cups for me, but I couldn't get it straight in my head.

      I couldn't get the thumbnails to enlarge, so I couldn't see details, but I loved the larger pictures.

      I wish you had shown or told how you add the brim from the larger end--do you snip open, fit, and glue to match? is there a special way to get glue to stick to slick plastic? will paper stick to plastic so I can make a wider brimmed hat? any additional instructions would be a big help.

      Thanks again!

    • theclevercat profile image
      Author

      Rachel Vega 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thanks, teaches! I like the pillbox style, but my personal favorite are the gigantic, wacky ones like people wear at the traces or special events. Thanks so much for the compliment! :-)

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      The hats remind me of the little pillbox hats Jackie O used to wear. Very sweet. You are so creative!

    • theclevercat profile image
      Author

      Rachel Vega 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thanks, tirelesstraveler! I just might end up making a Mardi Gras costume to go with it. ;-)

    • tirelesstraveler profile image

      Judy Specht 4 years ago from California

      Especially like the Mardi Gras hat. Very creative.

    • theclevercat profile image
      Author

      Rachel Vega 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Lol! I was in the office one day making a cup when I thought of all the used K-cups and wondering what I could do with them... and then it hit me. Barbie hats! It's a fun little project and gets those designing juices flowing.

      Thanks for commenting, BB! :)

    • Brainy Bunny profile image

      Brainy Bunny 4 years ago from Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania

      Ahahaha!!! Clevercat, your creativity never ceases to amaze me! I LOVE this idea, and although I'm not a coffee drinker, I may have to make friends with someone who is, so I can try this myself. I have a vision of a red hat with a bedazzled partial veil. And maybe a flower, too — why not?

    • theclevercat profile image
      Author

      Rachel Vega 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      I really hope so. Thanks lightsmotifs for stopping by! :)

    • lightmotifs profile image

      lightmotifs 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      So fun! Moms & daughters will have a blast doing this on a snow day.

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