How to Make a Newspaper Pirate Hat

Caucasian brother and sister dressed as a pirates
KidStock / Getty Images
  • Total Time: 2 hrs
  • Skill Level: Kid-friendly

Ahoy, there, do you want to make a pirate hat from newspaper? It's easy! Not all little pirates are lucky enough to be fully outfitted with garb when they hop aboard a ship. If your lil' matey is missing some gear and you've already made him or her an eye patch and built a pretend sword, it's easy enough to finish off the look by making him or her a pirate hat from a newspaper.

With a little folded paper, you'll transport your child into a pirate's world. Your child may need help folding the paper because his or her fine motor skills aren't yet developed enough to maneuver the paper correctly. But that's okay because even folding a little bit is a great way to develop fine motor skills.

No need for a hidden treasure hunt, you probably already have everything to make these hats lying around your house. By the way, it's okay if the newspaper you find is a little beat up—most of the flaws will be covered as you fold. Once you put the newspaper pirate hat on your buccaneer, then you can begin searching for hidden treasure and telling silly pirate jokes. For example, why was the ship shaking on the bottom of the ocean? Argh, it was a nervous wreck!

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Scotch tape


  • Rectangular sheet of newspaper


  1. Fold Top to Bottom

    Fold the paper from top to bottom. Some kids know this horizontal fold as the "hot dog roll" way of folding because, unlike the "hamburger bun" fold, it usually produces a long, thin piece of paper.

    Add an Experiment

    If you want to add another learning experience to this activity, have your child test out different types of paper and see which will rip and which will survive as he or she folds.

    A folded newspaper page.
    The Spruce / Amanda Morin
  2. Fold the Left Corner Down

    1. Fold one of the top corners toward the middle of the paper (it will make a triangle).
    2. Leave a margin of a few inches at the bottom of the page.
    A folded left corner on a paper pirate hat.
    The Spruce / Amanda Morin
  3. Fold the Second Corner

    1. Fold the second corner into the middle.
    2. It can overlap the first triangle a little if necessary.
    3. Add a small piece of tape to hold them together.
    Folding the second corner on a paper pirate hat.
    The Spruce / Amanda Morin
  4. Fold the Brim

    Fold the bottom margin of one side of the paper up toward the middle to start making the brim of your hat. This single-fold should partially cover the triangles. If it doesn't, then fold the bottom strip of paper again, so the strip is partially covering the triangles.

    Creating a brim on a paper pirate hat by folding the bottom.
    The Spruce / Amanda Morin
  5. Finish the Brim

    Flip the hat over and fold the other bottom margin the same way you folded the other side. This may be a little harder to do without tearing the paper. If you're having trouble, put your other hand inside the hat to hold it open a little bit.

    A finished brim on paper pirate hat
    The Spruce / Amanda Morin
  6. Open Your Pirate's Hat

  7. Pull the hat open.
  8. If necessary, you can tape the brim on the corners to help the hat weather your little pirate's adventures.
  9. A boy wearing a paper pirate hat and holding a cardboard sword.