Painted Visor Using a Doily Stencil

If I had to choose between Team Hat and Team Visor, there is no contest. Team Visor has all of my loyalty.

There is something about my hair that just does not look right under a baseball cap. Whenever I try to wear one I have a Dirty Dancing moment. “You can’t put Baby in a corner.” Same thing with my hair…you can’t tuck it under a cap!

Last week I ordered a plain navy visor on Amazon for about 7 bucks. I was actually pleasantly surprised with the quality.

When I ordered the visor, I didn’t intend on doing anything but wear it while lounging by the pool. It’s a rough, rough life.

But when it arrived, I decided this visor was begging for a crafty experiment.

I nixed my original crafty idea because it involved leaving the house for supplies and I was still basking in the glow of a quiet house after my kids boarded the school bus.

I did have fabric paint though!

I also had a package of paper doilies. Oh, yes I did!

Paper doilies actually make a decent stencil for small projects.

I didn’t know how the doily would work for this project, but I figured it was worth the try. Go big or go home! Oh, wait. I was already home.

I taped the doily to the hat with painter’s tape.

You could cut the doily down to size and tape both ends of the doily down.

Or you can use my method of just holding the other side down with your free hand. If you are a perfectionist, this technique might give you the heebie-jeebies. Just saying. My pendulum doesn’t even swing close to the perfectionist side of things, so I’m okay with a little “give” in my stenciling…at least for this project.

I found that I needed two coats of fabric paint to reach full coverage.

After a bit of experimentation, I decided that free-handing the second coat worked better for me. To each her own.

This is what it looked like after I placed the doily stencil in two parallel spots.

I probably could have or maybe should have left it like that, but the gap between the two lines was bugging me.

Plus, who am I kidding, I didn’t want the fun to stop!

I free-handed some additional spots to fill in that gap.

Here’s what I learned.

#1: Projects that would normally take me an hour when my kids are home only take 20 minutes. Now you know why I wanted the fun to continue! This was a super fast project.

#2: Two layers of paint is going to raise up above the surface of the visor fabric. Does that make sense? The design isn’t going to be perfectly flat like if it was screen-printed on.

I also learned that taking selfies with my good camera is really tricky and I can apparently only do it with my right hand. Hence, this particular view of the hat and my crazy curls.

You’ll want to follow the directions on the fabric paint to get the best results. This involves steam-setting the paint.

You’re also supposed to prewash your fabric. I did not do that this time. Hats just aren’t the same after you wash them. If all the paint falls off after I wash it, I will let you know! So, do as the directions say and not as I do. Okay?


I thought this experiment turned out pretty well! I will happily wear my new visor out and about. The possibilities are endless for how you could take a plain hat or visor and embellish it to become a one-of-a-kind creation. Now go forth and create!

UPDATE: Almost 3 years later and this visor is still going strong. I’ve sweated in it, swam in it, washed it and it still looks the same. I have not put it in the dryer though. Fabric paint for the win!

Ready for more ideas? Let’s see what we’ve got here…

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