Tuesday Tutorial: Paper Banner

 

Another party happened recently around here and I realized that I haven’t ever done tutorials on how to make your own party decor.  Banners are super easy (although not the quickest project) and can easily be saved for use again.  You can hang them for holidays, birthdays, showers, or really anything you want!

Paper Banner Tutorial

Finished Paper Banner

Materials:

- cardstock (bottom layer, second layer, and one or two papers for the lettering)

- Cricut (or something else for cutting the desired shapes)

- glue or Mod Podge

- tiny hole punch

- brads or ribbon

Gather materials - cardstock

Above you will see the papers I picked out for my son’s Avengers banner.  I wanted to use the red and blue cardstock for the back layer.  Then the red and white polka dots for the smaller layer on top of that.  Finally I just used black for the lettering. Quite often I use a shadow behind my lettering to make the words POP more but in this case I didn’t.  My paper stash is HUGE from all the scrapbooking I do used to do, so most of the time I don’t have to buy paper for my banners unless I am planning an entire party from invites to water bottle wraps.  Then everything needs to match!

To clarify here is what I gather when I am beginning to work on a banner:

-Bottom layer – 4-5 pieces of cardstock in 1 or 2 colors.  I like to alternate colors sometimes, other times I do all one color.  For this banner I grabbed 2 sheets of red and 2 sheets of blue to give me 20 circles (5 per page).

-Second layer – this is mostly decoration so for this I always use a patterned paper that matches the theme. I used 3 sheets of paper and cut 6 circles per page.

- lettering – 1 or 2 colors depending on whether or not you cut a shadow. Here I didn’t.

Cut out all pieces

Once all the pieces are cut out, I like to lay out my banner and arrange it before I start putting it together.  That way if I am alternating the back layer colors I don’t mess up!

begin to layer

I center the layer on the back circle. At this point I am not gluing anything together.

add lettering

Then add the lettering on top to get that all arranged correctly.  You don’t want any misspellings!

arrange entire banner

So here is what my desk usually looks like when a banner is in progress.  From here I start gluing it all together.  I was low on my craft glue sticks and didn’t want to mess with Mod Podge since my boys were all upstairs with me doing school.  Honestly I really love using Tacky Glue Spray Adhesive but it makes a mess and I didn’t have a box to spray onto.  But it makes banners come together SO very fast without the bubbles of Mod Podge.

add decorations

 

To add some color and decorations to the banner I found the Avengers colors that I was using for everything else and cut 4 circles in each color (the extras were used for other party decor and labeling).  Then using some vinyl (because I really didn’t want to have to glue so many pieces of cardstock down!).  The vinyl is already sticky backed so it was like putting on a large sticker.

Punching holes for brads

Next to put the banner together I use a cool tool that I received from my friend, Aimee (she loves handing me down all the scrapbooking supplies she doesn’t need anymore and she has given me LOTS of cool things, this tool being one of the best!)  You can get yourself some at JoAnn’s if you are lucky or you can just order some HERE.
assembling the banner
Now just start assembling your banner.  I like to use brads to put mine together for a couple reasons: they are a bit quicker than stringing the banner on ribbon and they are then able to be saved since they fold up so easily! (see the picture below)
Back view
To make sure they are going to fold nicely (great if you are taking the banner to another location to use or if you want to reuse them in the future) you will need to hook them together in the right way.  One side of the banner needs to be on top for all the circles while the other side is on the bottom.  See the picture below – the right side of the circle is always on TOP of the next circle and then the left side is always on the BOTTOM of the circle right before it.
Banner -right side under, left side on top
See how nicely this folds up!  Now it is time to fold it up and put it away for the next superhero party!
Folded up banner
What are you going to make a banner for first???

 

 

 

Tuesday Tutorial: Simple Superhero Cape

When my 7 yr old decided he wanted a Superhero party I was a bit surprised (all I had heard about for MONTHS was Lego Ninjago so I thought for sure the theme would involve plastic blocks).  Thankfully we have Pinterest now, seriously does anyone use Google anymore???  I know that is the first place I look for just about everything now!  I immediately started pinning away.  Then suddenly the party morphed into an Avenger theme, mainly because the birthday boy wanted to be Captain America.

Since this was going to be a small affair (only 3 guests and the birthday boy), I knew I could do a bit more for the favors.  Capes were a must!  There are many cape tutorials on Pinterest but in the end I decided just to do my own thing.

Superhero Cape Tutorial

Superhero Cape Tutorial

Materials:

  • 3/4 yard of fabric (I used cotton broadcloth)
  • bias tape
  • sewing tools – pins, rotary cutter, matching thread

To start I wanted my capes long so I didn’t cut the fabric (I left if the 44″ – selvage to selvage).  If you are making capes for little ones (toddlers), cutting the fabric in half where it is folded on the bolt would make a perfect length.

First I took one side that was 27″ and made that the top.  I found the center, marked it with a pin, and from there measured out in both direction marking my pleats with pins.  From the center I measured out 3″ then 2″ then again 3″ and 2″.  That way my pleats were about 4″ apart and there were two on each side.

 

 

mark pleats

I then pleated the fabric making sure the pleats faced INTO the center.  I folded the pins that were 2″ apart into each other so they met and then pinned them in place and ironed the pleats.

bring pins together

bring pins together to make pleat

Here is a close up picture of two of the pleats on one half of the cape.

IMG_6159

Here you can see the entire top after it was pleated.

pinned pleats

Once all the pleats were completed I did a quick basting stitch to hold the pleats in place while I hemmed the other three sides of the cape.  That way I didn’t have to worry about the pins coming out or the pleats getting messed up.

Next, I hemmed the cape on the remaining three sides.  I measured 1/4″ all the way around and folded the edges in.  I did this again and pinned as I went.  Then just stitch all the way around the camp.

 

hemmed edges

hem sides and bottom edges

I had a few eager helpers that wanted to sew when I was making these!

mommy's helpers

 

Now for the final step.  To finish the top edge and create the ties I went with bias tape.  I wanted something very simple that would still look nice. I prefer to use the EXTRA WIDE DOUBLE FOLD bias tape.

bias tape to finish top and create ties

I cut my bias tape to 36″ long (next time I think I would do a 54″ cut to make the ties a bit longer).  Then I folded the tape and marked the center with a pin.  Then I lined that up with the center top of the cape.

fold cut bias tape in half to find the center

Pin the bias tape all along the cape (it’s pleated now so it has a slight curve to it.  Fold each end of the bias tape into the folded edges to finish the ends.  Then just sew all the way around the top to secure it closed and to the cape.   Pin bias tape Add bias tape for ties

Find a willing assistant to model the completed cape and let them “fly” off to save their friends from harm.

Cute Cape Model

Here is a view of the back so you can see how the pleats fall.  My model is a bit smaller than the boys these were made for the so the pleats are harder to see.  Final Product

 

 

Here is a view of the finished capes on the Superheroes!  They are quite long but I like that they have room to grow!

Superhero Cape TutorialMy son wanted an Avengers themed party so I then used my Cricut and some iron on vinyl to create the symbols of the various Avengers.  More on that in another post!

 

Fun Food: Playing with Felt

 

My new niece is going to be 2 in just a few days and I have been making felt food for her birthday.  Honestly, this is a craft I have wanted to make for some time now, but didn’t really have an excuse until now.  Sure my boys have a play kitchen, but I didn’t really want to make them some knowing that soon the kitchen will be outgrown (I have changed my mind however and my little guy will be getting a set of food for his 2nd birthday!).  So imagine my joy when my nieces got a play kitchen for Christmas!  YAY  I can make them some food to play with!

I started pinning away to my Fun Food board on Pinterest in search of the sets to make.  This was a problem however since there are WAY more ideas than I have time for!  Good thing this is a gift I can keep adding to ;)

To begin with I was looking for felt food that came with tutorials.  This was a new craft to me and I needed some basic instruction to get me started (from there I would do what I usually do and figure it out as I go).  When I came across the post on a PB&J with the bread template I knew this was where to start.  Soon I was busy sewing (by hand) LOTS of bread.  Well, it felt (get it, FELT! haha) like lots.  The unfortunate thing about felt food is quite a bit of it is hand sewn.  That means TIME.  So there I would sit, while watching TV with my hubby, sewing away.

PB&J

The quesadilla I just looked at the picture and then figured it out.  I traced two circles on cream felt and then 1 circle on yellow.  Sandwiched them together, cut it into 6 pieces and then used my sewing machine and just sewed the edges of all 6 triangles.  Super quick and easy.  Used this same method for a pizza but that took a little more work with toppings.

Quesadilla

The felt breakfast is my favorite I think.  These are the pieces before I sewed them.  I didn’t want to change the thread on my sewing machine over and over, so I just sewed them by hand.  I did end up sewing the white of the eggs on the machine.  If I had a lot cut out and ready to go then I would just machine sew them.  Maybe next time.

 Pancakes and Eggs

I have had a lot of fun with felting food and I am torn as to whether or not to sell these.  While they are so fun and cute, they are quite a bit of work!  Can’t wait to show you ALL the food I have created but that will have to wait until after my niece’s birthday party!  I want it to be a bit of a surprise for her mama ;)