We always like to have at least one project that makes use of leftover fabric scraps. For our Patio Party, we created this fun party banner. Just print out the provided pennant shapes and cut out as many as you'd like from your available scraps. All you'll need to buy is a length of cording, and, if you want, colorful beads to string in between the pennants. It's a great green alternative to traditional crepe paper.
Wonder where we got the awesome wooden beads in our sample? They are little kid's stringing beads. Check your local educational toy store for the best selection. They come in both plastic and wood; we chose wood because the bright painted designs looked great with our fabric scraps.
Our sample was made using the beautiful fabrics from Heather Bailey's Freshcut collection. For information on where to buy, read How to Create a Fabric Pallet.
Sewing Tools You Need
- Any Sewing Machine (we recommend the Janome MyStyle 100)
Fabric and Other Supplies
- Scrap fabrics for pennant shapes
We've provided five pennant patterns: the smallest is 3 ½" wide x 10" long (5" folded length) and the largest is 8 ½" wide by 22" long (11" folded length).
- Colored beads in wood or plastic
Colors should match or compliment scrap fabric colors.
- Cording for banner
Make sure cording thickness will fit through the holes in the beads! Determine the length of the party banner you would like and buy that length plus 1 yard extra for securing banner on each end.
- Straight pins
- Download and print out the patterns for the various pennant shapes that make up the party banner. Cut out each triangle pattern along its drawn line.
- Take your first fabric scrap piece and fold it in half.
- Pin a triangle pennant shape on top of the fabric, lining up the edge labeled FOLDLINE on the paper pattern along the folded fabric edge.
- Cut along the two triangle edges. Do not cut the fold.
- Repeat for as many different pennant shapes and fabrics as you need to properly fill up the length of your cord.
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
- Remove the paper pattern from the fabric and stitch a seam that is ¼"- ½" (depending on the width of your cord) from the folded edge, back-tacking at the beginning and end of the seam line to secure and strengthen. This creates the tunnel for stringing your pennants onto the cording, so make sure it is wide enough for the cording to pass through.
- Make as many of these pennant pieces as you like, in various sizes and fabrics, to fill your desired party banner length.
- String the pennant pieces and beads onto the cording in whatever pattern and frequency you choose. For our example, we separated each pennant with at least 2-4 beads.
Hints and Tips
Because this banner was designed for one-time use at our Patio Party, we chose to not finish the edges of the pennants. They are simply the raw cut edges. With such a limited use, there really isn't any worry about the edges fraying. If you want to leave your banner up for a long time or move it inside to enjoy year-round, you could finish the edges with a simple double-turn hem (see our article How to Make a Simple Hem). Or, use pinking shears to create a decorative and less-likely-to-ravel edge.
Be sure to leave enough excess cording at each end of the party banner to secure it whatever you intend it to hang from.
And, remember to tie a simple knot at one end of the cording as you string the pennant pieces and the beads so they don't slide off the end – because that would be a bummer and I'm sure I saw a scene like that in a Three Stooges movie once.
Project Design: Liz Johnson
Sample Creation & Instructions: Gregory Dickson
Other machines suitable for this project include the Singer 4206 Inspiration and the elna Sew Fun.