I love homemade bunting. It’s so easy to make and has a fun, vintage appeal. It’s also a great way to use up scrap fabric.
Homemade bunting is perfect for so many different things:
- Celebrations: birthdays, baby showers, weddings!
- Gifts: who couldn’t use their own strand of birthday bunting?
- Decor: Perfect for decorating a kid’s bedroom or a sprucing up campsite.
The thing about dollar store decorations is that they are pretty much garbage. You blow up the balloons, hang up a “Congratulations” banner and set out plastic cups on a plastic tablecloth. Then the next day it all gets thrown away.
There is a better way. Paper straws that can be composted or recycled. Tissue paper flowers. And homemade bunting!
Three types of Homemade Bunting
Homemade bunting can be as simple or complicated as you want. All that really matters is starting with a bunch of scrappy fabric in coordinating colours.
Here are the three different ways that I have made bunting.
Rag strips bunting
This is definitely the easiest way to make bunting. I love the look of raw edges and the haphazard lengths of fabric.
I first made this type of bunting to dampen the slight echo in our dining area. Then I used it to decorate our off-grid campsite.
Hang a piece of string or rope. Then tie strips of fabric to the rope using a simple overhand knot. It’s really that easy!
It doesn’t matter how dense the fabric strips are… just use what you’ve got and add more fabric whenever you get some new scraps. You can even use old clothes: jeans with holes in the bum, free sports day t-shirts. It’s ideal for any fabric that won’t be worth anything second hand.
The first time I made a colourful triangle banner, I played around with starching the fabric or using fusible interfacing on the backside. And it really wasn’t worth the effort.
I only really have one recommendation, if you want the banner to look good on both sides, use fabric that has some colour on the wrong side. Most quilting fabrics do… just watch out for fabric that is white with a print on the front side only.
This type of banner is made by cutting out a bunch of triangles and sewing them into double folded bias tape. You can make large triangles or small triangles. You can have them strung one right after the other or leave space between them. It’s really up to you.
Here’s what I did:
- Cut a triangle pattern from a piece of paper with two sides that are 11 inches long and a short side that is 8 inches long.
- Sew them to the banner leaving 3 inches between each triangle.
- The ties at the end are 20 inches long.
- Each strand of homemade bunting has 18 triangles and a total length of around 20 feet.
Our “Happy Birthday” banner is definitely the most complex type of homemade bunting. It’s also a banner that we use 4 times a year, every year since I made it. So actually it gets quite a bit of use!
- Cut two triangles for each of the letters, one for the front side and one for the backside. I made them the same as above: 11 inches for the two long sides and 8 inches on the short side.
- Cut bulky letters out of a contrasting fabric.
- Applique the letters to the front side of the triangles.
- With the right sides together, sew the triangles together along the two long sides. The short side can remain open.
- Turn right side out and iron flat.
- Sew the triangles into the doubles folded bias tape, leaving some tape open for tying at the end of the banner.