DIY Craft Tutorial: How to Make an Easy No-Sew Fall Banner for Your Home
Colorful fabric banners are a wonderful way to decorate your mantle or entry way for any season or holiday. This festive banner features a welcoming wreath of fall leaves and a cheerful greeting for the season and for your guests.
This beautiful banner is an easy beginner project that can be made over a weekend. Using artificial or paper leaves, this autumn banner requires no sewing and just a few materials. Although I've included a written greeting, you can also choose to decorate your banner with more artificial flowers or ribbon instead.
Materials for Making a No-Sew Fall Banner
This is a suggested list of materials for making a similar banner for your home. You can adjust this list of supplies based on what you might already have on hand.
- About a yard of felt or fleece fabric for your banner, but the amount of fabric will depend upon the size of your finished banner. Felt and fleece are good choices for fabric because they do not fray when cut. However, if you want to hem or cover the edges, you can use other heavier weight fabrics.
- An assortment of artificial fall leaves - fabric leaves will probably adhere better to your banner, but you can also use heavy weight paper leaves. I would suggest using the brightest colored leaves you can find. My leaves came in a bouquet that I cut apart, but you can also use a garland of leaves that are sold in most craft stores during the fall season.
- One or two wooden dowels to hang your banner. The bottom dowel is optional, but you will need one dowel for the top edge. My dowel was 3 feet long and 3/16" in diameter.
- Hot glue and/or fabric glue to put together your banner.
- Ribbon, buttons, sequin and glitter - you can choose what additional decorations you want on your banner.
- Basic craft supplies including a ruler, a marking pen, and sharp scissors. A square is helpful in cutting the shape of your banner and you may need a small saw to trim down the length of your dowel.
Directions for Making a No-Sew Fall Leaves Banner
1. The first step is to determine the size of your finished banner. I made my banner to fit over of the glass in front of my fireplace. My finished banner is 20 inches wide and 21 inches high. Decide the height and width you want your banner to be, but add one inch to the length for attaching your top dowel and another inch if you want to have a bottom dowel on your banner.
2. Then cut your fabric to the width and length you want for your finished banner, remembering to add one inch to your length for your top dowel, and one inch to your length for your bottom dowel (though the bottom dowel is optional). Make sure all the sides of your cut fabric are square so that your banner will look and hang straight. A square and a ruler can help make sure your edges are straight and square with one another.
3. Trim your dowels to be about two inches longer than the width of your banner (You can make them even longer if you wish). Having a dowel on the bottom of your banner is optional, but will help weigh down the bottom and help your banner hang straight. However, you may decide to cut the bottom of your banner in a decorative shape (see below), in which case you will not need to add a bottom dowel.
4. Place your cut fabric face down on your work surface in the orientation you plan to display it. Fold down your top edge about an inch to create a sleeve for sliding through your top dowel. Check to make sure your dowel will fit easily through this sleeve. You may need to make it bigger if you have a wider dowel.
Spread a line of fabric glue or hot glue along the top edge of your fabric and glue it in place. You may want to put something on top of your fabric while it dries to make a strong contact.
5. If you plan to add a dowel to the bottom of your banner, make another sleeve on the bottom edge using the same process. However, this time turn the edge of your fabric up toward the center to make your sleeve. Then glue it in place.
6. An option - I chose to make a curved bottom edge on my banner. To do this, I folded my fabric lengthwise evenly so that my two sides matched up. I folded my fabric so that the right side faced in and the back side was on the outside. Then I traced a round bowl along the open bottom corner of my folded fabric to give me a rounded line to follow. With my fabric still folded, I cut along this curved line. When I unfolded my fabric, I had a clean curved bottom edge.
7. Next, decide the size you want your wreath of leaves to be on your banner. Draw a circle using a marking pen to use as a guide to start laying out your leaves. I didn't have anything large enough to trace, so I just drew my circle freehand which worked fine.
Then cut apart your artificial leaves and start positioning them to create your wreath. I would suggest doing a dry arrangement of your leaves (with no glue) to decide on the placement. The wreath on your banner does not need to be round, it could also be square or rectangular. Or your display could be another interesting arrangement of leaves.
8. When you have settled on an arrangement, start to glue down your leaves. I put my fabric glue on the underside of each leaf, following the spine of the leaf.
Once my leaves were in place, I put cans over all of them (you could also use books) to weigh them down and ensure a tight bond, then left them overnight to dry.
9. Now that your leaves are glued down and dried, you can start adding other decorations to your banner. I like buttons, so I put a few big brown buttons around the inside and outside of my wreath. I used a little hot glue to attach these buttons in place.
I then used glitter glue to write "hello" on my banner, and laid out some smaller buttons to spell "fall". I was very careful to lay out each word evenly and let my glitter glue dry completely before gluing down my smaller buttons with white craft glue.
If you want to add a slogan but are not confident to write it by hand, you can use stencils or pre-cut felt letters to add words to your banner. You can trace the stencil letters with marker, then fill them in using glitter glue or paint marker. Or you can just glue on some fabric letters.
Adding a Ribbon to Your Fall Wreath Banner
10. You can also decorate your banner with artificial flowers and ribbon.
To add a double loop bow to your banner, choose your ribbon (this can of either matching or coordinating in color). Cut a length of each ribbon that is long enough to loop around into a circle, with the ends overlapping by about an inch. This will be the width of your bow. Now make each of your ribbons into a loop by gluing the ends together with hot glue or white craft glue (see photo above).
11. Next, glue one of your loops on top of the other, forming a slight "X" shape.
12. Take a shorter piece of one of your ribbons and place it vertically in the center of your two crossed loops. Pull the ends of this shorter piece of ribbon tight to look like the knot of your bow. Glue the ends of your knot together in the back of your bow using hot glue or white glue.
13. (Optional) Cut two more lengths of ribbon and glue them like an upside down "V" onto your banner to look like the hanging ends of your bow. You can cut your ends on the diagonal to give them a finished look. I actually layered two different ribbons for my ends to add more color.
14. Glue your bow where your two hanging ends come together using hot glue. You may want to put something on top of your bow to create a tight bond.
Hanging Your Fall Leaves Banner
There are a couple of ways to hang your finished banner:
1. You could screw eyescrews in each end of your top dowel, then string some decorative ribbon through each end, tying it in a knot behind each eyescrew.
2. You can put a small nail in each end of your top dowel, then tie a small loop at each end of a piece of string or twine to put around each nail.
3. Or you can do what I did: I made a large loop of twine and knotted the two ends together. I folded my loop in half at the knot, then slipped the two ends of my dowel through the ends of my twine loop. I hung my banner at the center point of my doubled twine.
Copyright © 2015 by Donna Herron. All rights reserved.