Embroidery Library

Animals on the Edge Hats

Free project instructions for creating vinyl applique embroidery designs.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.


Animals on the Edge designs are cuter than ever, smiling from a fleece hat! Choose your little one's favorite critter and create a hat sure to keep them cozy and warm this winter.

We stitched the design and made the hat so that the animal peeks from the brim. A fleece tassel on top adds extra color and charm.

Read below for these free project instructions!


Project Needs & Notes:

- 1/2 yard fleece (for brim/inner lining)
- 1/2 yard fleece (for outer shell)
- Medium weight cutaway stabilizer
- Water soluble stabilizer for topping (we prefer Sulky Solvy or Sulky Super Solvy)
- Temporary spray adhesive
- Air-erase pen or dressmaker's pencil (for marking and placement)
- Needle and thread for some hand sewing


Designs featured in this tutorial include:
- H3710, Peeking Penguin

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

To begin, I will prepare the fabric for the embroidered cuff/inner lining piece. Lay the fleece out in front of you and stretch it in both directions (top to bottom and side to side). The direction with the most stretch will be used for the width of the fabric piece. This will allow the hat to stretch and give a better fit.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Using the sizing information below, position the fabric with the most stretch along the width (side to side) and cut the fabric using your desired dimensions. I made a child sized hat (3 years and up) so I cut my fabric to 21" wide by 12 1/2" high.

Infant (0-12 mos)
16 1/2" wide x 10" high

Toddler (12-36 mos)
18 1/2" wide x 11 1/4" high

Child (3 years and up)
20 1/2" wide x 12 1/2" high

Teen/Adult
23 1/2" wide x 14 1/4" high

Using an air erase pen, measure and mark 5" down along each side starting at the top corners. Draw a line connecting the marks and measure and mark the center of the line by measuring and dividing by two.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Create a paper template of the design by printing it at full size using embroidery software. See these handy instructions for more information about making and using templates.

I trimmed the template by cutting right along the bottom edge of the design, and around the side and top edges, leaving about 1/2" of excess around the side and top edges of the design.

Position the template with the bottom edge aligned with the line and the bottom center axis point aligned with the mark on the line. Poke a hole in the center of the template and mark the fabric. Also, mark the side and top axis points.


Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Remove the template. Spray a piece of medium weight cutaway stabilizer with temporary adhesive and smooth the fabric on top.

I am embroidering on a textured fleece, so I also added one layer of water soluble stabilizer on top of the fleece. Adding the topping will help prevent the stitches from sinking too far into the fabric (when embroidering on textured or high pile fleece). If you are embroidering on fleece with a smooth surface (low pile), topping is not necessary.

For more information on embroidering on fleece, click here. Hoop all the layers together by aligning the marks on the hoop with the lines on the fabric.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Attach the hoop to the machine and load the design. Move the hoop so that the needle is directly aligned with the center point on the fabric. Embroider the design.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

When the design has finished, carefully trim away the excess stabilizer on the backside of the embroidery and also tear away the excess topping. If any small bits of the topping remain you can use a tweezers to remove them or wet your fingertips with water and gently brush them away.

I am embroidering the stitch-filled Peeking Penguin design. You can also embroider the applique version of these designs if you prefer. Click here for instructions.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Now it is time to assemble the cap! Fold the fabric together, right sides together, with the short side ends aligned. Pin in place and sew a 1/2" seam along the pinned edge only.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

To prepare the outer shell fabric piece, cut another piece of fleece to the same dimensions you used to cut the cuff/inner lining (I cut mine to 21" wide by 12 1/2" high). Fold the fabric with right sides together, and align the short edges. Pin, and sew a 1/2" seam along the short side only. Turn the outer shell (here orange) right side out, and place it inside the inner lining (here teal) so that the right sides are together. Then match up the back seam.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Pin the two pieces together along the raw edge closest to the embroidery. Sew a 1/2" seam along the pinned edge, and make sure to leave a 3" opening by the back seam for turning.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Keeping the right sides together, turn the fabric so the wrong side of the outer shell (orange) is facing out. Then look at the hat, and find the end that does not have a seam sewn along the raw edges.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Take both the inner lining and the outer shell, and find where the back seams are. Then find where they would meet the "center front" of the hat along the opposite edge. Bring the edges together there, and use a hand sewing need to sew a few tack stitches through all the layers of fabric.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Then fold each side. Bring them to the center where we stitched before, and again use a hand sewing needle to tack all the layers of fabric in place. In the end this should make 4 equal sized flaps.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Lay one of the flaps down on the table, measure 1 1/2" down the folded side, and mark it with an air erase marker. Then use a straight-edge to draw a line from the mark to the center where all of the fabric is tacked together.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Cut along the drawn line to remove the corner. Make sure to hold the fabric firmly while cutting to ensure you cut through all of the layers of fabric.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Then repeat to measure, draw, and cut the corner off of each of the four flaps.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Once all of the flaps have been cut, carefully use a scissor or seam ripper to remove all of the hand-sewn stitches from the center. This will leave you with four loose triangle shapes along the edges of the fleece.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Next, pull inner lining (teal) out from inside the outer shell (orange), and make sure the wrong side of the fabric is facing out.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Now that the fleece pieces are separate, realign the points along the edge of the outer shell (orange). Hand stitch them back together in the center so that there are four flaps again.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

With right sides together, sew a 1/4" seam along the raw edge of each of the four flaps.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Then repeat to reassemble and sew the four flaps of the inner lining (teal).

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Using the 3" hole we left in the seam earlier, turn the hat right side out. Then use a hand sewing needle and thread to close the opening.

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Next, insert the inner lining with the embroidery sewn on it (teal) inside of the outer shell (orange).

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

Fold the cuff out until the bottom edge of the design is flush with the bottom fold of the cuff. To keep the design "on the edge" you can hand sew a couple of stitches through the bottom fold of the cuff along each side of the design (at the bottom of the design)

Free project instructions for creating embroidered fleece animal hats.

To create the tassel, cut a total of 20 pieces of fleece to 1/2" wide by 4" long (I cut from two different colors of fleece - 10 pieces each). Lay the pieces together in a pile, wrap thread around them in the center, and tie the thread tight with a knot. Hand sew the tassel in place at the top center of the cap.

Animals on the Edge Hats



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Products used in this Project:

Peeking Sock Monkey (Girl) $3.99 - $6.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

8.50" x 5.00" | 6.84" x 4.03" | 3.86" x 2.27"

Peeking Sock Monkey (Boy) $3.99 - $5.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

8.50" x 5.09" | 6.84" x 4.10" | 3.86" x 2.31"

Peeking Cat $4.99 - $5.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

7.03" x 5.86" | 5.84" x 4.86" | 3.86" x 3.21"

Peeking Cat (Applique) $2.99 - $4.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

6.70" x 5.88" | 5.58" x 4.89" | 3.88" x 3.40"

Peeking Dog $3.99 - $6.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

9.26" x 5.86" | 6.85" x 4.34" | 3.85" x 2.44"

Peeking Dog (Applique) $2.99 - $4.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

9.05" x 5.88" | 6.90" x 4.48" | 3.88" x 2.53"

Peeking Monkey $3.99 - $5.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

9.41" x 4.58" | 6.86" x 3.34" | 3.86" x 1.88"

Peeking Monkey (Applique) $2.99 - $4.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

9.43" x 5.04" | 6.84" x 3.66" | 3.88" x 2.08"

Peeking Skunk $3.99 - $5.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

8.51" x 5.03" | 6.87" x 4.06" | 3.86" x 2.28"

Peeking Skunk (Applique) $2.99 - $4.99

Available in 3 Sizes:

8.52" x 4.99" | 6.88" x 4.03" | 3.90" x 2.28"