How to make bunting flags

Twice in the last week or so I’ve been tweeting about bunting {as you do} which is when I realised that I haven’t actually done much bog standard regular triangle flag bunting.

Shocking I know, for a self confessed bunting lover, a major FAIL.

bunting post

So, today I set forth to right that terrible wrong and bring you bunting, traditional style, with some tweaks.

If you’ve trawled Google to find bunting flag templates, you will find a bundle of them, but being the picky little thing that I is, they are either too fat, thin, small or big for what I want so I set about on making my own.

A simple piece of card, ruler and pencil will suffice for making a template, but if your like me you will still bugger up the simple task of drawing a triangle {its a talent}, which is when I realised Word was for more than……. words!

Oh yeah, open up a Word Doc and discover the not quite endless possibilities!

I’m assuming other Wordy type programs have the same ability, but as I use Word, I don’t know.

Open up a blank doc and go to Insert, from there hit the Shapes button, a drop down menu will… drop down {its like magic}

finding shapes for bunting flags

From the drop down you can decide which shape you want to use, be practical in your choice!

Once you decide on your shape, hit it, and position where you want it on the page and resize.

resizing bunting flags

There are 2 other shapes on the drop down which I think would be perfect for bunting.

curved edge

And

pentagon

Once you have you shape to the size you want you can simply print it out, and BOOM you have your very own template. I’d suggest printing on to cardstock to make it last longer.

If you will be adding letters to your bunting, you might want to check the size of your template is going to accommodate your text.

Anywhere in your chosen shape, right click and this little box will pop up.

adding text

Hit on the {Add Text} tab and add a letter

adding text, letter

Once you have a letter to work with, go back to the home menu, and use the tabs along the top to tinker with the font, size and positioning of the letter.

adding text, font etc

Once you are satisfied that the letters are okay, you can either print out a flag template for each letter, to ensure each flag is the same size use ctrl + C to copy and paste the original.

WHOLE WORD TEMPLATE

Or you can print one flag and just eye ball the letter placement, which ever works for you.

Once you know what your bunting is going to be / say, you need to decide on fabric{s}.

Plain or pattern

Mixed up or single

Double or single sided

Who knew there were so many decisions?!

But if your going to bunting you may as well do it properly.

Plain solid colour flags can be just as effective as pattern fabrics.

I have done both single pattern and mixed up a bunch of patterns, both work well, especially when you co-ordinate fabrics from a particular line.

Some folk make single sided bunting, which is fine, but I think it can limit the ‘life’ of the bunting, so why not just flip it over and BOOM you got new bunting!

Right, now back to making your bunting.

what you need to make bunting

Draw around your template on to the wrong side your fabric, ensuring you have enough flags for your design.

using template to draw flags on fabric

Cut these out, and if necessary pair up, wrong sides facing and pin together.

flag pieces pinned right sides facing

Using a sewing machine {or by hand if you must} sew along both sides, leaving the top open.

sewing long sides together

Trim the edges using pinking shears, and turn right side out,

flags trimmed with pinking shears

use a pokey thing to get the pointy bit to point if necessary.

flags turned right side out

Press with an iron, makes it all pretty and neat.

Continue until all your flags are made.

{If you are adding letters to your flags, I would do this BEFORE sewing the back and front together, keep the thready bits on the inside}

Once you have all your flags ready, you are ready to sew them to them together, you can get special bunting tape, I use either cotton tape, folded in half or some rather pretty bias binding.

bias binding and cotton tape

I decided to use cotton tape.

cotton tape

Which I folded in half and pressed with a warm iron, I was left with perfectly useable bunting tape!

cotton tape pressed in half

Depending on your need for accuracy, you can either pin each flag to the ‘bunting tape’ at an equally measured distance or eyeball it.

For this set I found the middle of the cotton tape, the flag which would go in the middle of all the flags, folded it in half and slotted the flag between the 2 sides of the cotton tape, I then pinned it in place.

flag pinned to cotton tape

Once I had the centre flag in placed I added the remaining flags in alternate colours, pinning as I went.

flags pinned to cotton tape

!Remember to leave some tape at either end for hanging!

And despite what they say

SIZE DOES MATTER

Measure the space you want to hang the bunting, your can easily trim the length if necessary, but if you make it too short, well, umm, it wont fit!

Lining the cotton tape up with the sewing machine, I began sewing the fabric flags to the cotton tape, removing pins as I went.

sewing flags to cotton tape

Once all the flags were sewn to the cotton tape, I made little loops at either end to hanging the bunting up with.

The end result is bunting with a gorgeous flowery pattern on one side and stripes and polka dots on the other, when I fancy a change I can just flip it over and I have new bunting!

front and back of bunting flags

 

I’ve hung this one up in the living room, I’m going to do something with this wall, just not sure what yet!

the wall 

pretty pretty bunting

There are so many possibilities when it comes to bunting, from shape, size to materials, if you’ve not made any before give it ago!

 

 

 

Comments

  1. Ok bunting is now on my very long to do list - I've always fancied doing a happy birthday one. X

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  2. Hi, just looking at your blog! I LOVE IT!!! so nice! I only wish I was as creative as you Jo x

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  3. Really, very detailed information abt making lovely buntings. Nice post ever seen for bunting preparation. Over and above all you have explained it so simply that anybody can give it a try.

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  4. Fantastic! Thank you for this. I am going to give it a go now. I want to do a 'Merry Xmas' Sign so hopefully I've given myself enough time! ha ha. x

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  5. Thank you for this! I am going to give it a go now. I want to do a 'merry xmas' one so hopefully I have given myself enough time! ha ha. x

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  6. Ooh thank you! Perfect explanation that makes it sound so simple! I'm throwing myself in the deep end with 30m to make by August for my wedding. Wish me luck! X

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    1. Eeek! I'm sure you will manage it just fine! xx

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  7. Any idea how long is a maximum for one length of bunting so that it won't sag too much? I'm worried as all that fabric will be quite heavy. My daughter wants them to be 25 ft. long and hang from the ceiling at her wedding. It's in July so I need to get it done.

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    1. I don't honestly know, but for a long length of bunting I would suggest that you secure the bunting tape at regular intervals.
      Your daughters wedding is a lovely occasion to be making the bunting for, I'm sure you will get it completed!

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  8. Hi Thank you for the tutorial, I have started to make bunting approx. 11ft saying 'Candy Bar'.... but I am slightly confused (doesn't take too much!) with the letters on the template & transferring them to the flags... sounds really bad but was going to ask if you could give me an ides... do I print the words separate & use as template? Sorry for being silly :)

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  9. Hi
    Thank you so much for the tutorial... can you help as I am stuck on the lettering aspect. I have to make an 11ft bunting that says 'Candy Bar', do I have to print out the letters as templates separate or am I doing it all wrong - (doesn't take a lot to confuse me! :)

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  10. fantastic thank you for the tip about the shapes just what I was looking for !
    alison

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  11. Do you use 1 inch double sided bias binding or 1 inch cotton tape folded in half or is it narrower?

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  12. I use 1 inch cotton tape folded in half, I just don't get on with bias binding.

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