Adding a Hood to Anything

Happy New Year! We are excited for all the things 2013 will bring and we hope you are too. While we rest, recoup, and recharge from the holiday season enjoy this guest post we shared at Seven Alive in November, if you missed it then. You can find the original post on Kadie’s great blog here and now below.


Hi, everybody. We’re so excited to be invited to share a post with you. My name is Rachel. Me and mom, Donna, blog over at Once Upon a Sewing Machine. We sew for ourselves, our homes, and frequently for my two kiddos.

Today’s tutorial is great for sewing enthusiasts of all levels, and it’s a super handy skill to have, too. It has gotten cold by us…real cold. That means it’s time to layer up, and it also means that hoods have become an essential part of the wardrobe.

Sewing hoods can seem intimidating at first, but they are actually really easy to add to an existing pattern or shirt. I’m sewing for me today, but the steps are the same for men, women, and children. We’re going to go through how to attach a lined hood. Let’s get started!

For our example I’m using a top I picked up at the thrift store for $3.00 and some waffle weave fabric I had on hand. You could easily take the fabric for your hood from a thrift store top if you wanted to.

adding a hood

I like that this top has the button opening, but you could also create a cardigan, or use a standard tee neckline.

If you don’t have a button opening or V at your neckline, make sure your new hood is made of material with stretch or you may not be able to get your head back through the opening!

Now you’ll need your favorite hooded item from your closet. Fold it in half, lay it out on the fabric you have chosen for your hood, and grab a ruler.

adding a hoodYou’re going to trace around your hood, adding in ½” for your seam allowance.

adding a hoodIt will look something like this. Remember, if you go too big you can trim it down, but if you go too small you can’t fix it! I free handed in my neckline, but you can fold down your hood and trace.

I’m making a lined hood, so I will cut 4 pieces. If you aren’t going to line your hood, cut 2.

adding a hood

Take 2 pieces, face them right sides together, and sew from the center front to center back. Do the same with your remaining 2 pieces. Now you will have two hoods! Try one on your head to do a rough size check.

As a reminder, we added ½” to our piece. That will be your seam allowance.

Now take your 2 hoods and place them right sides together. Pin the seam that will run around your face. It will look like this-

adding a hood

Sew with ½” seam allowance. Press the seam allowance that runs from the forehead to the back of the neck to one side and turn the hood right side out.

I use a double needle for this next step because I like the look, but a single needle will work also.

adding a hood

Put a line of stitching down directly next to your seam tacking down your seam allowance and further securing your two layers of hood.

**If you are not lining your hood, turn the front of your hood under and hem. Then put in this stitching to hold your seam allowance down.

Now we’re going to attach your hood!

adding a hood

Here is the easiest way to do it. Pin the center back hood to the center back of your shirt. Pin the tip of your hood to the front center or neck opening. Pin at the center point of that space (probably near the shoulder). Continue pinning by breaking your opening in half like this until you feel comfortable that your whole hood is secured. Sew.

If you are adding a hood to a pattern, you can skip the neck ribbing. In this case I’m going to attach it my neck ribbing. Depending on your top you may want to cut off the ribbing and attach your hood directly to the shirt.

adding a hoodSew all the way around. Your fully lined hood is attached!

adding a hood

Easy, right? Now experiment. Want to add a drawstring? Line the front with some faux fur? The fabric and material mixing offers you a huge variety of projects just waiting to be tackled.

Big thanks to Kadie for having us over to share this tutorial today! We would love for you to stop by and check out our other tutorials, join our Facebook community, Pin great projects with us, and check out our recently moved store front.

{ 10 comments… add one }
  • Stella Marie January 1, 2013, 4:34 pm

    This is a great tutorial to have on hand! You never know when you might need to add a hood to something…(for some reason Halloween costumes keep popping in my head) 🙂

    • onceuponasewingmachine January 1, 2013, 5:01 pm

      I used this for Halloween costumes 2 years ago, so yep, agreed!

  • Aniza August 24, 2013, 2:17 am

    Success! I have tried your tutorial . Thank you so much!!!

  • Sara Lee Valiente October 3, 2013, 7:53 pm

    Thank you for sharing this! It really helps a lot. 🙂

  • Tierra October 5, 2013, 11:17 am

    thanks so much for this! i couldn’t find anything else online like this, and it looks so easy to do, even for someone who doesn’t own a sewing machine (me) you literally just saved my sons Halloween costume. thanks again!!

  • Angela October 13, 2013, 7:23 pm

    Just what I was looking for. I am making myself a hoodie and am tracing a tshirt for the main part of my pattern and now I’ve found how to do the hood. I’m going to make my hoodie out of the super soft minky fabric, I may never take it off. Lol

  • Pam @Threading My Way October 24, 2014, 5:57 pm

    Too hot for hoods here now, but pinning for future reference.

  • angela August 8, 2016, 2:43 pm

    This is nice but what if you don’t own anything with a hood on it? And you need to add one? Been playing with several patterns just like this one, and none of them lay correctly! They’re all either way too big, or way too small!

  • Tara L September 13, 2019, 7:00 pm

    This was great! Exactly what I needed to figure out about adding hoods. Thanks!

  • Cheryl June 13, 2020, 3:23 pm

    thank you! Just what I needed for the quilted vest I made for myself, to which I decided to attach a hood!

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