DIY fabric flag bunting banner

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I’d like to share the fabric flag bunting that I made for my daughters first birthday party.  This is one of the biggest projects I’ve done to-date on my sewing machine (I’ve only sewed a few times on fabric).   I share that bit about my limited sewing experience so that others will know they can try this even if you haven’t done this type of things before. 

I used a beautiful set of fabrics (called Fly Away Sunset by Robert Kaufman) that has birds, flowers, butterflies & bright colorful shapes.  I used two tutorials to help guide me through the process.  One from Petite Lemon and then this great one from My Longest Year

The Longest Year tutorial was great because the design was for fat quarters of fabric.  I cut the flags to 6×9 (using a cardstock template to hold over the fabric when cutting) and got the most triangles out of my fabric.    

This is the design I used in order to get 5 flags from each quarter of fabric. 

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I used pinking shears to cut along the edges of the triangle flags.   When complete, I ran an iron over the pairs of fabric to smooth them out.  Then I took a moment to admire how nice the patterns look together.

fabric bunting (1)    Next I sewed the flags together.  The advice in the tutorial was very helpful for a first timer:  keep it simple, be haphazard, cut recklessly.”    I kept remembering these phrases when I was worried about fabric not lining up or uneven triangles.  That was the best advice for me to hear and kept me moving along to finish the project.

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I used a zig-zag stich that looks great with the scalloped edges left by the pinking shears. 

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I then sewed the triangles inside double fold white bias tape, only leaving about an inch in between each flag.  With the final seam across the top it looks so finished & pretty. 

I ended up with four 9 feet sections of banner and 60 flags.   

If it’s your first time here’s my advice…stick with it and don’t worry about it being perfect (use the tutorials above).  You’ll get faster each time you make one (great advice from my mother-in-law).  I was really slow with the first 9 foot section and then when I came back to do the last three sections I whizzed through them so much quicker.   That was where I realized she’s right, once you figure out what you are doing it’s more fun and easier. 

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Our kitchen has a triangle shape where two walls meet to make a great corner to hang the banners across our dining table. One of the best things about having the party at your home is that you can decorate early.   I was able to get this hung early and then it was up for our daughters mid-week actual birthday (with the party being on the following weekend).  

When you spend so much time preparing it’s fun to have decorations go up early and to leave them up after to celebrate.

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The fun thing about fabric is you can use this decoration over & over.  It would be great to adorn a table with one of these hanging on the table cloth.  

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I’d definitely like to make one of these again!!   We are done with parties for a while in our little family so I am going to get back to getting caught up on our scrapbook albums.  

In my next posts I’ll share more of the décor, handmade items & photos from the fun birthday party celebration we had this weekend! 

happy birthday banner

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Today I’d like to share the colorful birthday banner I’ve made for my son’s upcoming party.  I used the same Life of the Party paper that you saw on the invites and pinwheels.

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I used 12 different patterns of paper across the pennants (18 total triangles).

I love that I had the opportunity to use so many of the different patterns at once.  The patterns really make quite a statement when you see them all together for one presentation.

I alternated the big patterns (lots of colors) with the smaller ones (single colors) to let each piece shine.

The pennant pattern you see here on the “G” pennant below was a big source of inspiration for this banner and made me decide to use this shape for the paper.

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Below is a close up of the yellow ribbon that is on the top of the banners.  It’s a beautiful elastic ribbon with a ruffle on the bottom half.  Due to the elasticity it wouldn’t stay put with the tacky tape by itself so I had to hand stitch across the top of the yellow ribbon onto each pennant.   A staple would have worked too but I didn’t have a yellow or white staple.    I did use a silver staple to attach the banner paper pieces with the navy ribbon that goes across the back, holding the entire thing together.

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I hand cut the triangles and made them larger than I did for Matthew’s banner.

Size:

  • 7 inches wide (across the top)
  • 6 inches in height
  • navy cardstock letters are 3 inch upper/lowercase

I put “Happy Birthday” together on one string because I like how it looks when it’s long enough to fill the entire wall.  I kept Gavin on a separate string so that we can hang this in is room after the party.

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Banners are so easy/fast to make, I encourage you to make one for your next celebration!  It’s a great way to get excited about an event and remember the special moment once it’s passed.

 

Supplies:  pattern paper-BasicGrey, navy ribbon, yellow ruffled ribbon, Terrifically Tacky Tape-Provo Craft, staples, Navy Cardstock-Bazzil, letters-three inch die cuts, glue dots

baby girl pennant banner

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I wanted to share a beautiful gift that was given to me a year ago for Gwen’s birth.   It’s a pennant style banner that says “Gwenyth”  and is decorating the wall in her baby room

It was a special handmade baby shower gift by my special friend Michelle.  She’s been making these for others and I was thrilled to be the recipient for one of her lovely baby banners. 

I picked paper that would match the colors I was using in her room for the wall color and accents (light green, light pink, blue, brown, etc). 

Fits just perfectly above the closet door:

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Supplies: 

  • Michelle used die cuts at Ben Franklin to cut most of the shapes:  the triangle for the pennant (7 wide at top & 9 1/2 in height), 4 inch circle scallops for the letters to sit in side (2 1/2 inches tall). 
  • All of the pattern papers used are from the BasicGrey Lemonade Collection.  I made sure to get two of the collection packs so that it could be used for both the handmade gifts being made for the baby room.   I am planning to use this paper to make some baby girl scrapbook layouts in Gwen’s baby album too.

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  • Ribbon is sewed across the top to give it great stability.  It’s bunched up to create a beautiful look.  Short pieces of ribbon is also tied in between each pennant. 

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close up of the ribbon: 

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Close up detail of the full pennants:

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Here’s a photo taken by Michelle at my shower after I opened the banner.  Thank you Michelle for the beautiful gift that looks so lovely in Gwen’s room!   We love it!!   

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rectangle handmade banner

I’ve wanted to make a banner for years but never got around to doing one.  Last fall I made my first one for my husbands birthday.  Being that it was for a man I had to keep it masculine so I chose a simple rectangle shape and black letters.

Square Banner

I used this very cute doggie paper part of the “Max & Whiskers” Basic Gray Collection as the background.   Mounted the paper rectangle on an orange/red cardstock. I used the die-cuts at Ben Franklin to cut out the letters, I think they are 3 inches.    The rectangles are 5 inches tall.

Here are a few close up shots (taken on my phone while making) of the pattern & rectangle pieces.  The black letters are chipboard (not just cardstock paper) I like the thickness & dimension the chipboard gives to a flat paper banner.

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I forgot to make the “t” and an “a” so I had to go back to the store a second time to punch these two letters.    So much for trying to get a lot done in one trip to the craft store with a newborn baby along for the ride!

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I used a thin black organza ribbon to hang the banner.  I am pleased with how it turned out and was happy to finally finish a banner!  Now I am excited to make more for the next occasion that arises.

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Got bunches of balloons in coordinating colors (yellow, blue & red) surround the banner that hung from the fire place.    They looked really pretty and framed the banner well.

 

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Made a Happy Birthday chipbard tag card from the kids & furry four legged kids.

I planned to make table decorations/centerpieces with the pattern paper cut into circles mounted on sticks.   It would have been cute to have the dogs around as decorations.   Unfortunately I didn’t have the supplies to create circles in the right size so I abandoned this idea.

I also ran short of time, this is why I am starting so early to get the things ready for my sons party.

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I plan to use some of the extra paper & embellishments leftover to do a fun scrapbook layout with my favorite photos from the birthday party.

I’d also like to do another layout with the dogs as they’ll look adorable with this doggie themed patterned paper.

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A yummy chocolate cake from Costco the perfect cake for the celebration.  Highly recommend if you like chocolate!

 

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Woof-Woof!!  Happy Birthday Daddy from your three little “Whiskers.”

making a paper heart lei & heart banner

This weekend Gavin and I did a few DIY craft projects.  They are both very easy and can be done at home with no special tools.

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We made the paper heart lei that we found in a valentine DIY craft slide show that Nicole made for Glo. Thanks for sharing Nicole!!

I love doing quick & easy projects with Gavin and the nice thing is that he doesn’t need to do every step. I find the steps that would be good for him to do and then isolate them (by doing the prep before he’s there or completing the rest after we do his part). Right now he is very excited about using scissors so he was excited to be able to cut the straws. I held the straw and pointed to the places where he could place the cut.

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You can cut the hearts out by folding paper over and tracing half of the heart like we used to do in elementary school art. However, I don’t like the results of my free handing so I decided to use this new tool Chris recently got me. It’s a handy heart punch that made this project look very easy.

This EK success paper shapers punch makes a heart that’s just about 2 inches and the best thing about it is that it’s easy to punch. Gavin was able to push the button and cut his own hearts.   He was thrilled to cut out the hearts.  Most of my paper punches are so tight that he can’t push the levers/buttons on his own.

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Gavin models the lei and was refusing to smile for me.  Oh boy, I might be in trouble if he’s already starting this!

We are thinking of making two more for his teachers for Valentines Day and this time I’ll get some red yarn and possibly solid white straws if I can find them.

Heart Banner:   I also used the punch to make a heart banner to hang on the wall.  Got this idea from Etsy.

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Paper wise it was super easy, I pulled all the paper for both projects from my leftover scrap bag.  Don’t we all have a pile of extra paper somewhere that’s waiting to be used for easy small projects like these?

There are 20 hearts with small coordinating hearts on each big heart.  For the small hearts I used the creative memories heart punch that creates two sizes.

The ribbon was tied in a knot and pulled through a small hole that’s on the front top of each heart.

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Next time:

  • make a few more banners using different colored papers & string.  Having a darker ribbon would make it stand out more on the wall.  The one I used is white/sheer organza ribbon.
  • Use pattern papers with prints.  I used a solid color for my big hearts but it would be fun to have patterns.  I am saving my valentine heart paper for scrapbook layouts so I was afraid to use them for a banner
  • measure out the distance in between the hearts on the string and tie the knots first, I didn’t do mine exact

Future project:    I’d love to make the gumball necklace next time.  These would make  GREAT inexpensive birthday party favors!    I’d like to remember these for Gwen’s birthday party in a few years.  As I don’t think parents of 1 year olds would appreciate getting this type of gift since babies/toddlers love to insert everything into their mouths.  Small round hard balls and babies don’t go well together.

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Gavin had the most fun working on maze puzzles from a little book he received as a party favor.  We were surprised that he liked them so much.

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