How to make a Summer Bunting – Tutorial

Today was a glorious, sunshine-y day.  I sat at my dining (aka craft) table in front of the sliding glass doors that lead out into my garden. With the smells of cut grass and BBQ floating in on the breeze, I was inspired to make something quintessentially summer — a lovely, bright bunting.  Perfect for dressing up the mantle or for quick and easy garden party decor, I absolutely love how versatile they are!

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Now, I have to admit that this is my very first sewing tutorial and I am an absolute beginner — I took tons of photos to try to show every step and I am sure there are probably faster/easier/better ways to make a bunting but this is my own little home-made version and I quite like it. 🙂

You will need:

  • Four 8x8in squares of fabric each in a different colour/pattern
  • A ball of jute twine
  • A safety pin
  • Cardstock
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Sewing machine, thread
  • Iron

To make the bunting:

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1. Lay your first square of fabric out and fold in half with wrong sides together.

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2. Fold over into quarters and turn the square around so that the fat folded edge faces you.

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3. Cut a simple triangle shape from the cardstock. Mine measured 4 in across the top and 4 1/2 in along the sides. This is your bunting template.

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4. Place the top edge of the template against the folded edge of your fabric and cut out.

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5. Remove the template and open out the fabric. You will have 2 diamond shapes.  Fold these in half with wrong sides together. Now you have two double sided bunting flags!

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6. Repeat steps 1-5 with the remaining squares of fabric and give your bunting flags a good press with an iron.

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7. Pop a flag into your sewing machine and sew a zigzag stitch down the long sides (not across the top, that comes next). Repeat with all flags.

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8. Now stitch a straight stitch across the top of each flag, leaving space between the top of the flag and the stitching — approx. 1/2in.  This will allow you to thread the jute twine through each flag.

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9. Grab your safety pin and hook into one end of your ball of twine.  Thread the twine through the top of each flag, spacing them out neatly.

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10.  Continue to thread all of your flags onto the twine.  Leaving about 12in on either side, cut twine and tie two loops at each end.

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Hang and enjoy!

Note: I did not bother to secure the flags to the twine — they can slide along freely. However, the rough edges of the twine help to keep the flags in place and they don’t easily move around.  If you plan to use this bunting outdoors or in a way that it is likely to be touched, you can always stitch or hot glue each flag in place.  I was just too lazy to complete this step and couldn’t wait to display my newest creation! 😉

Please do let me know if this tutorial is helpful to you or if there are any adjustments/suggestions.

Thanks for reading!

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I am not dead…

I have been on holiday. Ok, not really.

As much as I wish I could tell you that I have been on a sandy beach somewhere, soaking up UV rays and sipping on something fruity and very alcoholic, alas, tis not so.

In its final weeks, my MA dissertation soundly kicked my butt. I exerted every last ounce of mental, emotional, and physical energy into writing 20,000 words of the most important story I have ever told. Two bouts of bronchitis, one UTI, and a semi mental breakdown later, and I think (fingers crossed) I am finally on the mend. I have been celebrating by sleeping. Move over Rip van Winkle…

Now it’s time to pick myself back up, dust myself off, and get cracking on bright new things ahead. Coming up in the next few weeks is Zoie’s 2nd birthday and party and I have been busy planning away excitedly. I am also on the hunt for some work experience (better put this MA to some use right?) and I have grand plans for this blog as well!

Fun times ahead! So I’m back, and I really hope I can stay this time. 🙂

Running out of excuses, ha

Well talk about fallin’ right off the face of the blogosphere! What’s going on with me? Could it be that I’ve run out of things to say? Never, haha.

Last week was half term, which in my world means one stir-crazy 4 year old who redefined the phrase “couch potato”. I’m surprised her butt didn’t fuse to the sofa! I did manage to pry her away from the TV long enough to drag her to a doctor’s appointment (for her little sis), a session at the soft-play centre, a run around at the park, and two playdates. Win.

If I had my way, they’d be in school always. Yeah, I said it.

Besides the hassle of half term, I’ve been in full on party planning panic mode for Emilie’s 5th birthday. If you know me, you know my parties. And you know that there is no halfway. It’s all or nothing. If it’s not perfect, well, mama ain’t happy. The theme is a closely guarded secret. If I told you I’d have to silence you, then who would be left to read my blog? For those who do know the theme, consider yourselves a part of the elite few — my ninja party planning crew. All shall be revealed in time. Watch this space!

So other than losing sleep and ignoring the fact that I still have a 20,000 word dissertation to write, all is well in my world of nappies, snot, and bruised knees.

I promise to get back on the blogging ball. Soon.

 

 

The First 29th

I spend so much time organising parties for my kiddos, that I’ve never thrown one for myself! This year I thought why the heck not?!

"Wish" tile lovingly made by Emilie (mummy helped with the letters)

Soooo, despite my birthday being on New Year’s Day (terrible day to be born, honestly the whole world is hung over) I arranged to throw my little shindig on the following Friday.

My budget? Non existent.  So I improvised.

I recycled, reused, and repurposed items from the kids’ recent birthdays. The cupcake stand, glass jars, and mini pails from Zoie’s 1st birthday all got a new lease on life.  Vases and dishes from Emilie’s 4th birthday were again put to good use.

My theme? Why, rainbow of course! (because of my indecision and inability to choose just one or two main colours haha)

I found super cute plates, cups, table cover, and bunting for only 99p per pack. I also draped brightly coloured streamers everywhere – again only 99p for about a zillion of them. I scooped up some red napkins that were on sale after the Christmas rush and some bright cupcake cases to match.

One of my favorite ways of decorating is with flowers. They bring such a great burst of colour and freshness to any party and you can find flowers to match just about any colour scheme. I bought a simple, multicoloured £5 bouquet at the supermarket and separated and trimmed the flowers to fit my various sized jars, vases, and mini pails. I gave the vessels some pizzaz by wrapping them in bright lengths of yarn that I bought (also 99p) in a kiddie cross stitch activity pack. Oooh… and I can’t forget the super shiny silly straws I scooped for, you guessed it, 99p!

And what about the menu? I hit up the frozen food section baby! Everything from spring rolls to chicken satay sticks — just popped them in the oven and it was party time! The cupcakes (Funfetti!) I made earlier in the morning, frosted, and adorned them with colorful mini chocolate buttons. Dessert was ridiculously simple: freshly sliced strawberries with Nutella (chocolate hazelnut spread for those who are not familiar with this glorious concoction)(I zapped the Nutella in the microwave for 10 seconds to make it a gooey dippable consistency… heaven!)

The party itself was honestly the most fun I’ve had in years. Since (secretly) I knew the party was as much for the kiddies as it was for me, I made sure we played a rousing game of Pass the Parcel (everyone got a prize!) and the requisite Pin the Tail on the Donkey. And of course there were copious amounts of dancing, even some of the, ahem, more vivacious Caribbean variety.

So my 29th birthday was a great success and a fantastic time was had by all.

Can’t wait until next year when my second 29th rolls around. Because we all know, there’s no such thing as 30! 😉

The First 29th

I spend so much time organising parties for my kiddos, that I’ve never thrown one for myself! This year I thought why the heck not?!

"Wish" tile lovingly made by Emilie (mummy helped with the letters)

Soooo, despite my birthday being on New Year’s Day (terrible day to be born, honestly the whole world is hung over) I arranged to throw my little shindig on the following Friday.

My budget? Non existent.  So I improvised.

I recycled, reused, and repurposed items from the kids’ recent birthdays. The cupcake stand, glass jars, and mini pails from Zoie’s 1st birthday all got a new lease on life.  Vases and dishes from Emilie’s 4th birthday were again put to good use.

My theme? Why, rainbow of course! (because of my indecision and inability to choose just one or two main colours haha)

I found super cute plates, cups, table cover, and bunting for only 99p per pack. I also draped brightly coloured streamers everywhere – again only 99p for about a zillion of them. I scooped up some red napkins that were on sale after the Christmas rush and some bright cupcake cases to match.

One of my favorite ways of decorating is with flowers. They bring such a great burst of colour and freshness to any party and you can find flowers to match just about any colour scheme. I bought a simple, multicoloured £5 bouquet at the supermarket and separated and trimmed the flowers to fit my various sized jars, vases, and mini pails. I gave the vessels some pizzaz by wrapping them in bright lengths of yarn that I bought (also 99p) in a kiddie cross stitch activity pack. Oooh… and I can’t forget the super shiny silly straws I scooped for, you guessed it, 99p!

And what about the menu? I hit up the frozen food section baby! Everything from spring rolls to chicken satay sticks — just popped them in the oven and it was party time! The cupcakes (Funfetti!) I made earlier in the morning, frosted, and adorned them with colorful mini chocolate buttons. Dessert was ridiculously simple: freshly sliced strawberries with Nutella (chocolate hazelnut spread for those who are not familiar with this glorious concoction)(I zapped the Nutella in the microwave for 10 seconds to make it a gooey dippable consistency… heaven!)

The party itself was honestly the most fun I’ve had in years. Since (secretly) I knew the party was as much for the kiddies as it was for me, I made sure we played a rousing game of Pass the Parcel (everyone got a prize!) and the requisite Pin the Tail on the Donkey. And of course there were copious amounts of dancing, even some of the, ahem, more vivacious Caribbean variety.

So my 29th birthday was a great success and a fantastic time was had by all.

Can’t wait until next year when my second 29th rolls around. Because we all know, there’s no such thing as 30! 😉

Fabulous food and friends

My very first dinner party in honour of Thanksgiving went off beautifully! I was able to treat my UK and Italian friends to their  first taste of traditional American Thanksgiving fare. And my green bean casserole and bourbon mashed sweet potatoes were a huge hit!

The decorations were ultra simple due to time and budget, but they worked well. (Ignore the cutlery placement, lol)

Patterned napkins, slips of brown package paper with handwritten names, and stray sprigs of rosemary that didn’t make it into the turkey roasting tin.

My friend Irene and her little girl Emma brought us some alphabet biscuits they’d made at home and they were the perfect addition to the table setting! So sweet.

We had a lovely time, especially the kids who had their own little table and all got along so nicely.

Such a wonderful night, capped off with stunning aromatic Italian coffee (thanks Lorenzo!) that had me awake at 3am and still smiling with thoughts of my dear friends.