Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Fabric Banner Tutorial

I quite possibly could have sewn 50 fabric banners last year. I haven't counted, and I'm not really sure how I would count since most of the banners were given away. Fifty sounds like a lot, but I really think I made that many. Maybe more. You can call me the Banner Queen.

These are just a few...

I sat down to make my first (I think??) banner this year. I thought why not show all of my sewing friends how to make their very own banner. Banners are second to party garland. It's fun to throw up a banner that says "Welcome" when friends come over. Or, "Give Thanks" for Thanksgiving. Or to hang a name banner in your kid's room. Your options are endless!

Let's get started!!

Fabric Banner Tutorial

Things you need:

- scallop banner pattern - download and print HERE!

- fabric - The amount will vary depending on how many letters you need. You can use one fabric or coordinate as many fabrics as your creative brain can handle!

- felt - for your letters

- letter template - I taught elementary school for 7 years, so I make my own bubble letters. I'm pretty positive it's a requirement for lower level elementary school teachers to know how to make bubble letters. You could buy a template, or just find a font you like on your computer and enlarge the letters you need to your desired size.

- 1/2 inch double folded bias tape - You can buy already made bias tape or you can make your own.

-pinking shears - If you don't have a pair, buy some!! Wait until JoAnn's sends out their 50% off coupons, and invest in some. You won't regret it!

- The basics - thread, scissors, pins

Now that you've got all your supplies, let's start cutting!

Place fabric wrong side together. Pin your scallop pattern to your fabric, and cut around the scallop using pinking shears. I leave roughly 1/4 inch between my pattern and my pinking sheared edge. Make as many scallops as needed for the word or phrase you are spelling. Remember to do a blank scallop if you are spelling a phrase. You'll want a blank scallop between words.

Your scallops will look the same on the front and the back. In the picture above on the right, if I were to flip each scallop over, it would look the same. Well, the big flowers wouldn't be exactly the same, but you'd see the right side of the flower fabric.

Next cut out your letters. Pretty self explanatory.

Now pin all your letters to your scallops. This is the only pinning I do before I sew the scallop front and back together.

Zigzag stitch around each scallop except for the top. Your fabrics might move a little. Don't worry. You could pin the scallop more if you'd like, but you won't be able to tell once it's hung. Trust me. I'm the Banner Queen. I would know. The picture below is the best picture I took of the zigzag stitch around my scallop. Sorry!

Straight stitch around each letter. (See above.) This is the most tedious step in this project. If this is your first banner, I would suggest a short word, name, or phrase.

Your scallops are finished!

Move to a large flat space (I usually use my kitchen floor). Lay out your scallops in the order you want them. Check your spelling! (Yes, I have made a spelling error and had to fix it. Totally frustrating!) I overlap my scallops by about a 1/2 inch, but you don't have to.

Pin scallops inside the fold of your bias tape. Use your pins generously so the scallops don't fall out of the bias tape while sewing.

Zigzag stitch from end to end of the bias tape. At the beginning and end of the bias tape, fold the bias tape under. See pictures below the picture of me sewing the bias tape to my scallops if you need help with how to fold bias tape ends.

Open bias tape so that long edges are folded into the center. Fold short edge down 1/2 inch.

Fold bias tape. Now zigzag stitch along the bias tape. Remember to fold the bias tape under at the end!

You're done! Pour yourself a glass of sparking apple cider (sorry, I don't drink alcohol!) and *Cheers* to you for making your very own fabric banner!!

P.S. - I made this banner for a friend and tucked it inside a One Yard Wonder Folklore Bag. I really like this bag. Next time I make it I will be adding interfacing to the straps, and I'm going to need to review/rework how to add the top band to the bag. Overall, the design of the bag gets two thumbs up from me!


Kristina said...

If I promise to break out the sewing machine and make my "practice" placemats sometime soon... want to have another sewing night so you can teach me how to make a bag? That one looks awesome! I need something bright and colorful on my shoulder.

E J said...

Thanks for the tutorial! Have had material to make a birthday one for a while - this is just what I needed to get motivated!

PS - Did you already see this Burlap & Ruffle Banner tutorial -

Annee said...

Your bag turned out really pretty. I love it. And the tutorial is amazing.

Liz said...

Kristina, we'll be in touch!

Etta, thanks for the hot link! I love new ideas!

Strommer Family said...

Hi Liz, I'm one of Annee's friends from Korea and I just love your guys' blog...I have recently become the crafting and sewing type since my husband's been deployed and I just love the simple instructions you give....I can't wait for a new project everytime I look!! So keep 'em coming..

Liz said...

Hello Annee's friend! So glad you are enjoying our blog.

I'm sorry to hear that your husband is deployed. I can only imagine how hard that must be on your and your children.

If you have any questions about the banner or other projects, let us know!!

Joshua and Rachel said...

I love this!!! I just made one and blogged about it and linked back to your blog. You can check it out here
Thanks for the great tutorial :)

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