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One of the best things about a visit to the Maritime Museum for many kids is making crafty and creative souvenirs in our activity spaces and exhibitions to take home. Why wait until your next visit? Join us for some papercraft capers inspired by current exhibitions and all things maritime!

Boy wearing crafty rescue hat

Make your own search and rescue hat.

Dazzling stripes of colour and a cellophane cup torch will brighten up any dress up costume or imaginative play game inspired by our favourite everyday heroes!

tape, glue, scissors, paper, card, cup, cello



  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Sticky tape
  • Stapler
  • 2 or 3 sheets of A4 coloured paper. Bright colours like orange, yellow, red are best
  • A wide strip of cardboard, long enough to fit around your head
  • A plastic or paper cup
  • Some yellow cellophane
Step one staple hat band

Step 1. Staple hat band

Step 1. Wrap the piece of wide cardboard around into a circle band big enough to fit your head. Staple it together at the overlapping edges. Staple top and bottom.

TIP: To stop the staple from catching hair or scratching your child’s face, you can staple with the flat side of staple facing the inside of the hat.

Step 2 cut coloured paper into strips

Step 2. Cut coloured paper into strips

Step 2. Cut your coloured paper into vertical strips about 2 cm

Step three decorate hat with coloured paper strips

Step 3. Decorate hat with coloured paper strips

Step 3. Glue the coloured strips onto your hat base to create a ‘rescue’ inspired pattern with vertical or diagonal stripes.

Step four decorate cup

Step 4. Decorate cup

Step 4. Take any leftover strips of coloured paper and decorate your cup. Wind the strips around the cup and fasten with sticky tape.

Step five scrunch cellophane

Step 5. Scrunch cellophane

cellophane in cup

Cellophane in cup

Step 5. Take your yellow cellophane and scrunch it. Place this inside the cup with some of the cellophane poking out.  Extra sticky tape may be required to make it stay there.

Step 6. Attach the ‘light’ to your hat

Step 6. Attach the cup to the front of your hat band using four pieces of sticky tape at the sides of the cup.

And done!

Your crafty search and rescue hat is ready to rock!


Annalice Creighton

Annalice is the public programs coordinator at the Australian National Maritime Museum.