DIY Easy Fabric Garland

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A fabric, pennant-style garland is perfect for any season or decor. They can be layered on top one another, on their own, or with other types of garland. And, unlike other crafting projects, the supplies needed are inexpensive and easy to find. In fact, this project is perfect for fabric scraps!

I was inspired to make this garland as a layering piece by a photo I saw on Instagram. Earlier this fall, I’d purchased a wooden pumpkin garland from Hobby Lobby. After seeing the photo, I realized how easy it would be to create the look myself.

garland
pennant
fabric

I chose a popular fabric – black and ivory buffalo check – for my pennants.

It’s ideal for Halloween, but will work with my Thanksgiving and Christmas decor, too.

Plus, it goes with almost any other pattern.

This garland will be ready in about an hour with these easy directions.

So, Let’s Get Crafting!

Supplies Needed:

  • Fabric, about 15″ wide by 3-4 feet or 1/4 yard
  • Glue gun and glue sticks OR sewing machine and thread
  • Scissors (fabric shears) or rotary cutter
  • pins
  • cardboard or premade template
  • pencil
  • ribbon, abound 1/2″ wide by 6-8 feet long
  • bulb pins for hanging garland
  • embellishments like extra ribbon, twine, small bells, pom-poms, etc.

Measuring

The first step is to calculate how long you’d like the garland to be. I use a low-tech, simple method: a roll of twine to get the length.

This works great for an existing area. For instance, mine was going over my fireplace, under an existing garland. So, I strung the twine between the nails in place leaving excess on the sides.

When measuring, leave at least 12-15″ of excess ribbon on each side, as shown in the photo at the right.

You’ll need this excess ribbon later, when finishing it.

This project is perfect to help use up any fabric scraps you might have.

I bought a yard of fabric, and it’s enough to make about 10 of them! But, I don’t mind having the excess because I love this buffalo check. A 15″ piece by about 3′ long should work for most projects.

Preparing your fabric

Once you have your fabric selected, it’s time to prep it.

I recommend ironing the fabric first. For a smooth, seamless look, use some fabric sizing spray on your fabric.

pennant

To make your fabric more durable, my sister, Debbie, suggests using freezer paper under the fabric:

Before ironing, place the shiny side of the freezer paper up against the back of the fabric. Iron it on, then peel the paper off.

Not only will it give the fabric a stiffer, smoother look but it helps prevent fraying.

Cutting your pennants

Create a template for your fabric pennants. You can buy templates, but I decided to make mine from some thin cardboard.

It measures 7″ wide x 15″ long. Although I used the cutting board shown below, you don’t need one. The point tip should be at the mid-point of the width. Use a ruler to help guide your markings, then cut.

fabric garland

Lay the template over your fabric, print side down. Align the tops of the fabric and template. Trace the template onto your fabric with a fabric (or regular) pencil.

Due to the nature of how the triangles align, there is only minimal leftover fabric material.

Use very sharp scissors for cutting the fabric. Or use a rotary cutter, if you have one. If you use older or dull scissors, they won’t cut your fabric smoothly. Following your tracing lines, cut the pennants.

To add a little flair to your fabric pennants, cut some or all of them with pinking shears. The lines they create are zig zag and add an element of fun.

Putting it all together

As my fabric garland was going to be underneath the wooden pumpkin one, I wanted the fabric pennants to lay between each pumpkin.

If that’s your intent, too, then align each pennant on the ribbon and pin it as a guide.

If you’re a seamstress and have a sewing machine at the ready, then the best method for attaching the pennants to the ribbon is sewing them.

Otherwise, use a hot or low temp glue gun. This is the method I used.

I bought a new low-temp glue gun for this project.

Lay your fabric pennants print side down. My squared cutting mat was really useful during this step. It gave me a protective surface to glue on. And, the ruler was a guide for laying out my fabric pieces.

Remember to leave 12″-15″ of ribbon free on the sides.

garland

If you’re sewing, then pin the fabric pieces to the ribbon. Since my garland was laying under another one, my pennants were already pinned to the ribbon (as mentioned above).

I’d definitely recommend pinning of you don’t have a ruled surface, like a quilting or cutting mat, to work on.

I let the gun heat up and applied a thin layer of glue at the top of the fabric, then placed the ribbon carefully over it. I used my finger to smooth out the ribbon.

If you are using a hot glue gun, wait a minute or two for the glue to cool a little. With the low-temp glue, I could smooth it right after gluing.

pennant

Let the banner rest on a flat surface for several minutes to let the glue set.

Finishing touches

For a more polished or decorative look, add trim to the edges of your pennants. Sewing notions like rip rac trim, lace, fringe, or braided trim can be added.

To give the banner a more customized look, add more ribbon streamers to the sides.

In mine, I added some twine and sheer ribbon.

There are a variety of ways to accessorize the streamers of your banner.

garland

For my Valentines garland (above), I used little bells tied to the ends of the twine.

You can add pom-poms, buttons, bells, or any number of decorative items to the end of the ribbons.

If you opt to leave your streamers unadorned, cut the ends to add a little visual interest. Fold the end of the ribbon in half, and cut at an angle or cut on the diagonal.

Hanging your garland

Use bulb pins or small rings to hang the garland. You can find them in the knitting or embroidery supplies of your local crafts store.

I tied the ribbon streamers to the bulb pin and then pinned it through the ribbon. Then hang.

And you’re finished!

This is such an easy and fun craft project to make.

What a gorgeous decor addition this garland is on my cabinet!

Whether it’s cooking or crafting, make something special today!

Looking for more? Check out these blog posts: https://www.thefeatherednester.com/lessons-decor-inspiration-style/

https://www.thefeatherednester.com/its-june-new-stuff-to-share-including-new-recipe-index/

Let’s preserve the season’s bounty! https://www.thefeatherednester.com/canning-on-a-fall-saturday/

Love buffalo check? Me too! I talk about it here: https://www.thefeatherednester.com/lets-get-decorating-folks-decor/

I'd love hear what you think!

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