Pennant Banners: A Tutorial
My best friend recently had her second baby, a little girl. She already has a sweet little boy and her plan was for the children to share a bedroom/nursery. Which means she needed to add to the existing décor to incorporate the new little girl. One of the things she wanted was pennant banners with the children’s names. So she commissioned me to make them. (Did you know I take commissions? I do! If you want me to make something for you all you have to do is send me a note using the handy form on the “Contact Me” page located up there above my header.)
I love the look of little fabric pennants strung up and they were so easy to make. I thought I would do a little tutorial in case you wanted to make some of your own. These are great in children’s bedrooms with their names or you can use them for special celebrations or even to represent your favorite sports team. They are so cute and can be used anywhere and because they are fabric they can be washed and stored and won’t tear and look all beat up.
Okay, let’s go!
1 charm pack of your choice
5 inch squares of fabrics of your choice
5 inch square of scrap cardboard or cardstock
Double-fold bias tape (store-bought or homemade)
Heavy weight interfacing
Prep Work – Embellish your squares
Because I was using these to display names, I went ahead and added the letters to my squares before I put anything else together. If you are leaving your pennants plain you will want to skip this step.
I used my handy embroidery machine to appliqué a little white oval and to stitch the letters onto my squares. You can add your letters/decoration however you choose. I’m not going to include appliqué instructions in my tutorial…you can find dozens with a simple Google search. But I will show you how I set everything up.
For the record, my appliqués were about 1” x 2”.
- Find the center on your piece of fabric.
- Measure down about 2 inches from the center and mark with an X. This should be the center of your design.
- Add your letter!
Make the Pennants
- Select which squares from your charm pack you would like to use. You will need two for each pennant: one for the front and one for the back.
- Following the manufacturer’s instructions, attach the heavy weight interfacing to your fabric squares.
- Make a triangle template. (I just used the cardboard backing from my charm pack.) Find the center on the bottom side and draw straight lines from that center point to each of the top corners. Cut off the sides forming your triangle.
- Place your new template on top of each “front” square and trace. You should only really need to trace the sides of the triangle.
- Don’t cut yet!!
- Stack your front and back squares wrong sides together. You can pin if you want to, but I didn’t think it was necessary.
- Top stitch along the lines you drew earlier. I used a triple stitch in a contrasting thread to make it stand out a bit more.
- When you get to the tip of your triangle, leave the needle down and lift the presser foot to rotate your square.
- Now, take your pinking shears and trim about a 1/4 inch away from your stitching line.
- Yay! Pennants are done!
Make the Banner
- Line up or measure out your pennants to determine how much double-fold bias tape you will need. I left about 8 inches of free space on either side to allow room for hanging.
- Pin your triangles with the top edge sandwiched in the fold of the bias tape. Go ahead and pin all the triangles you will be using on that strip of bias tape.
- Finish your bias tape ends. Sorry, I don’t have a picture of this, but here is a good tutorial on how to do this. Just use the part about finishing the ends.
- Stich close to the open edge all the way across the bias tape.
- Now your banner is finished!
- One last thing I did was add a tiny bias tape bow to the girl banner, just to add some interest. I simply finished a scrap of tape as before and stitched the open edge closed. Then I tied it into a sweet little bow.
And there you go…cute fabric pennants to string up in your child’s room, your living room or your next tailgate.