bunting on a red gazebo in a sunny garden

How to Make Fabric Bunting

Bunting adds a real fun and festive feel to any celebration and if you make it out of fabric, it is durable and can be used again and again.

I made this bunting for my sister’s house warming party recently, all 21 metres of it! I was apprehensive about the amount of time it would take to make but once I got into a rythmn it was surprisingly easy. Obviously you can make bunting as long or short as you need it!

completed bunting, red, whit and blue triangles on a red and white string
Voila, the finished bunting!

I picked these colours to match her red gazebo.

three bolts of cloth, red blue and white
I chose sturdy fabrics

You will need:

  • Strong fabric like canvas or denim. Quantities depend on how much bunting you need but I used approx 150cm by 1m square. You could recycle old jeans or other scrap fabrics – the canvas I used was once a wardrobe door!
  • Baker’s string (or any ribbon/tape) as long as you need the bunting, plus two extra metres for each end so that you can tie the bunting up. I picked baker’s string because it is two-toned and matched my colour scheme.
  • Piece of card (back of a cereal box), a pair of sharp and strong scissors (for cutting through layers of thick fabric) and a pencil. Alternatively you could use pinking shears to give the triangles a serrated edge and to help prevent fraying, however, because I used thick fabric I felt it wasn’t necessary.
  • A sewing machine and thread.
bakers string in a glass jar

To make the Bunting:

template of triangular card, pencil and scissors
Draw triangles around a card template on folded fabric
three colours of bunting fabric
Note how the triangles perfectly align because the height and length are the same.
  1. Cut out a triangle shape for your template from the card. These are 18cm across the top edge and 18cm from the centre of the top edge to the tip of the triangle. If your triangle is the same length and height, you can alternate the template position from upright to upside down, so that you draw and cut one edge for two triangles.
  2. Fold the fabric in a strip wide enough to accommodate the height of the template. Fold over so that you have four layers of fabric, this means that you can cut multiple triangles simultaneously. Pin the fabric in place to stop it from shifting when you cut.
  3. Draw around the template with a pencil in a straight row across the folded strip. You will need approx 5 triangles per metre.
  4. Once all the triangles have been cut, lay them in piles in the order you want them to be placed on the string. You don’t have to do this step but I did to save time, otherwise I’d forget which one comes next!
  5. Tie a looped knot on one end of your string to stop it from fraying.
  6. Position the first triangle on your sewing maching and lay the string, one metre from the end, along the top edge of the triangle. Make sure the bulk of the rest of the string is at the front of the machine, otherswise you’re sewing in the wrong direction!
  7. Using a medium sized zigzag stitch, stitch the string onto the fabric. Run a couple of reverse stitches over the beginning and end of each section of string where it is attached to the fabric to reinforce the stitching and prevent the fabric from coming loose at the edges.
  8. Leave about one and a half centimetres of string between each triangle to allow for some flexibility. I just continued stitching along the intervening string with a zigzag stich so that I didn’t have to cut all the loose threads on every single triangle.
  9. Keep adding your fabric triangles until you reach the last metre of string!
  10. If you have time you could do a zigzag stitich around the bottome edges of every triangle, this will also help to prevent fraying. however, we decided that a frayed edge would lend a rustic look to the denim!
stitching the string onto the fabric
Zig zag stitch over the string
pin it for later!

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