Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tutorial ~ Make A Felt & Fabric Birthday Banner

birthday bunting

I'm so pleased with how the Happy Birthday banner I made for my son's birthday last weekend turned out that I just had to share it with all of you :)

birthday bunting

You will need:

Printed ABC's
an assortment of colored felt
coordinating cotton fabrics and thread
cookie cutter, mug or something else round to trace around

birthday bunting

I started by tracing 3 inch circles on my felt using one of my water glasses as a tracing pattern :) Then I found a 4 inch scalloped cookie cutter that was just perfect for the white accent underneath the colored circles and traced around it, then cutting both styles of circles out. Don't worry if you don't have items that are the exact measurements that I used, check out your cookie cutters & glass cupboard and match up sizes that you have :)

Next using my word processor program on my computer I typed in 'happy birthday' and adjusted the size until the letters printed out at a suitable size to fit on the top circle comfortably without being to close to the edges. I used the 'Arial' font at 200 points for the size :)

birthday bunting

With all of your circles and letters cut out, stack them together the way that you want them to look and start by sewing just your letters on through all 3 layers of felt. This is much quicker than hand sewing and I was in a bit of a time crunch *grin*.

birthday bunting

With all of your letters attached it's time to get your flags cut. You'll have to excuse my hodge podge assortment of measuring tools! LOL. I only had one ruler that was long enough so I had to resort to fabric scraps for the other side *grin*. Not a big deal at this point though, all you want to do right now is visualize how big you want your flags to be so that your felt circles are going to fit nicely and jot down your measurements for when you are ready to actually start cutting!

Now that I knew exactly what size my flags we're going to have to be to look good, I started to cut. I used a 10 inch wide strip of cotton cut parallel to the selvage along the width of my fabric leaving me with a nice rectangular chunk.

With my flags planning to be 7 inches wide at the top, I lined one end of my ruler up at one of the corners on the narrow end of rectangle sized fabric and moved the other end of the ruler diagonally across the fabric so that it stopped 3.5 inches further up the fabric on the opposite side. This first cut was going to create one side of one flag. Once that was cut I repositioned my ruler so that it stayed on the 3.5 inch mark on the one side and slid the opposite end of the ruler up the fabric 7 inches and made my second cut which then created my 7 inch wide triangle like in the above photo.

To continue cutting your triangles out of your rectangular piece of fabric you just alternate what sides you count up your 7 & 3.5 inches. Hopefully my photo is worth a 1000 words and helps clarify my instructions *grin*.

birthday bunting

With my assortment of colored flags all cut, I laid the entire banner out so that I could alternate flags & felt alphabet circles around until I had it looking just like I wanted :)

birthday bunting

As soon as I had my line up decided I took them to the sewing machine, positioned each circle 3/4 of an inch below the top of each flag and then edge stitched inside the colored felt circles to attach them permanently to the flags.

birthday bunting

Since I never turned under any of the raw edges on my cotton I was a bit concerned that with all of the handling it was going to start to fray. So I took my pinking sheers and quickly cut down each of the edges tidying up any stray threads and giving them a fun finish :)

birthday bunting

The last and final step was to attach some pre-made bias tape along the top, connecting all of the flags together :) Now if you're really industrious you can actually make your own bias and the thought did actually crossed my mind but I opted for the easy way out and used the pre-made stuff *grin*.

M's 4th Birthday

That's it! One fun and super colorful birthday banner :) These could be used for anything to, not necessarily just birthdays. They'll gussy up any festivities and you could personalize it with your child's name to! The only thing that I would have changed was to put on the number 4 with velcro so that I would have been able to remove it every year and update how old he is. Alas, hindsight is 20/20 *grin*.

Have fun making one of your own and let me know when you've finished it. I'd love to see what you do to make yours special :)

~ Rosina


Little Family Fun said...

This is great! I will have to see what I come up with using your excellent tutorial and my meager sewing skills. I'll let you know when I have it complete!

Mama Llama said...

Where do you buy your felt? Those colors are so bright!

Jo Shabo said...

so cute! Thanks for sharing! :)

Rosina {Rosy ~ Posy} said...

Thanks everyone :) I'm so happy you like it!

Mama Llama: I find lots of my felt at the dollar store really cheap and if you can't find it there Michaels always has tons & check out your local fabric store :) They should carry it by the meter or by the little sheets. Hope that helps :)

Mitsy / ArtMind said...

wow, that's beautiful Rosina!
I love all the color & I bet you have a very happy birthdayboy at your home. :)

felt said...

wow! what a great idea!!! love to check out.. thanks for sharing...

Unknown said...

Rosina, thank you for the tutorial. I'm making one inspired by you for my little boy's 4th birthday party. I love the stitched look, but I'm taking a shortcut and am planning to use fabric glue to attach the letters to the circles. Can't wait to finish it up!

Rosina {Rosy ~ Posy} said...

Oh you are so very welcome Wendi :) I hope you will send me a link when you are finished so that I can see yours to :) Your little guy is going to love it!

Bron said...

Thank you so much for this inspiration. I have had you bookmarked for a while and have finally made my family one...just in the nick of time too.

RikChik said...

You can still fix your Banner. Just use a seam ripper to remove the #4 circle from the flag. You can then replace it with velcro and replace it with a velcro circle! Viola!
Great job! Thanks for the tutorial. I am making a banner for a wedding shower. :o)

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Librarymama said...

Thank you for this tutorial! I made one following your instructions for my daughter's birthday. Here's a pic of how it turned out:

I used the die cut machine at my work to make the fancy circles. I just tacked the number on, and at my son's suggestion, I left the two pennants on the end blank. The cakes on the end are just held on by felt friction, and I can take them off and replace them with shapes related to whatever the birthday theme of the year is.

A Moment in Time said...

Brilliant idea! What a wonderful gift for a dear friend. Thanks for sharing, Linda.

Perlengkapan Bayi said...

Very nice! I like this, so colorful.

Mesin Fotocopy said...

Wow! Cute.. Do you use a copy machine for make that?

Precious Crafts said...

I am glad to learn from your tutorial - I am planning to make one soon and this tutorial really helps!:D