I'm deep in planning for my daughter's upcoming birthday party, & since I already did the glitter name banner plus I have a whole lot of pink fabric left over from the doll quilt (which is going to get its own post one of these days, once I finish the whole big project) plus there's the whole princess theme that I have to orchestrate, I've made three strings of pink party pennants over the past week. I am a party flag machine.
This is not a difficult project, as probably everyone but me knows, since I am maybe the last person around to make a set. I wanted double-sided (if all goes well weatherwise, we'll be hanging these in the backyard, otherwise I may be using them to cordon off a pen in the living room for seven tiny sparkly sugar-rushed princesses), with pinked edges (while I was googling around about these, I saw a very nice set with bias tape edging, but I wanted fast & dirty), with the minimum of cutting fuss. Here's how I reinvented the party flag wheel:
I made a template (very sophisticated technique = folding a mag subscription card in half, cutting from top corner to bottom middle, then retracing the whole thing 1/2" bigger onto an old manila folder), but because I always, always end up hacking up my templates with my rotary cutter, I cut out my pieces 1/4" larger than the template (sticky tape on the back of the template keeps it from moving around on the fabric).
I stacked the pieces wrong sides together, sewed down one side & up the other with a 1/4" seam allowance. My pieces didn't always exactly match up, but as long as the mismatch stayed under 1/8" I didn't bother with it.
After I sewed the flag together, I put a pinking blade on my rotary cutter & trimmed off 1/8" inch from each of the long sides (marking my 1/8" from the line of stitching).
The first string I made, I did a very careful job of pinning the flags to the bias tape, but quickly realized that I needed to shift things around while sewing anyway, so from then on I just put in a pin or two to keep each flag in reasonable order as I worked my way down the line. If you were doing an easy repeating pattern, I don't think there'd be any need to pin at all, but I'd given myself a slightly complicated repeat (two main fabrics, alternating every 4th flag, with the three flags in between being somewhat randomly chosen except one of the three needed to be one of the predominantly non-pink flags, also I wanted it to look like I just threw it together & it landed perfectly, you know the effect I mean), so pinning was easier than trying to keep a whole bunch of piles organized.
I was planning on a 1/2" wide tape holding the flags together, but I accidentally bought single fold instead of double fold & didn't feel like going back to the store, so 1/4" it is! The tape is folded in half, sandwiching the unsewn short side of the flag, stitched 1/8" from the folded edge. I put my first flag about 12" in from one end, & just tucked each following flag into the tape when I was about 1/2" from the end of the flag before it (this worked better than pinning to keep the flags placed tightly together). After I got all the flags on (last one placed about 12" from the other end of the bias tape), I went back & put the same 1/8" seam in each loose end, after unfolding the tape at the end, folding 1/4" up crosswise (to hide the raw edge), & then folding the tape closed again.
They seem to cause my husband to cast meaningful glances at used car lot flags when we drive past, but I think the tiny princesses are going to love them. Too bad that, as of now, there's only a 40% chance that they'll get to love them out in the backyard.