Tutorial #02 – Making a pennant flag with rainbow (no sewing machine)

Sorry it’s been a while between tutorials. I had hoped to bring you a biscuit recipe but after one failed attempt, I lost a little interest in them. Instead I’ve decided to bring you another sewing tutorial, but this one can be done without a sewing machine. My hand sewing is not the neatest I’m afraid but I figured just commit to it and it becomes part of the handmade look! So here it is, tutorial number two.

What you will need:

  • Several different colours of felt. I went with large white and smaller coloured pieces for a rainbow. The largest piece needs to be around A4 size.
  • Card or paper to make a template. You don’t have to do this but it does make it easier.
  • Scissors for cutting, thread for sewing. Oh and a needle of course.
  • Some form of stick for the top. I used a dowel rod as I have them anyway for my pin display flags but a chop stick, or just regular stick stick from the garden would work fine too.
  • String for the top (I forgot to add this to the photo), or if you’re stuck then you can just use some thread.

Step 1. Start by making a template. You don’t need to do this as I said above but its quick and easy, making your flag shape a bit neater. Take an A4 piece of paper and decide what shape you want your pennant. For the middle point, measure 20cm down each long edge and mark. Measure across the bottom and mark the middle. Draw a line from each edge mark to the middle and this will give your pointed bottom. Cut out the bottom corners.

For the flag with two points at the bottom, you do similar. Measure 20cms down each side and then draw a line across from edge to edge. Mark the middle of that line and then draw from the middle of that line, down to each corner.

Step 2. Use the template to draw out the shape onto the felt. We’re using felt because it won’t fray at the edges and it will save us sewing up the edges. Once you’ve drawn out the template, cut it out.

Step 3. Next we’re moving onto the rainbow. I cut out a large semi circle of red first. This will work as the base for the design but if you prefer to just do each stripe/arch that’s fine too. After you have cut out the red part, cut out stripes of each colour. Use the one you’ve just done as a guide for size. If you’re not confident in doing this by hand, you could draw out another template for a rainbow and cut each stripe out to use as a guide. Remember to make each stripe/arch, just a little bigger when you cut them out, so they overlap nicely.

Step 4. Once you have all the colours cut out (you can do all 7 colours if you like but I wanted to keep mine simple), layer them in place to make sure they look okay. Then start to sew each layer on. Start with red, using red thread, hand stitch the semi circle on. Swap thread colour and stitch the next layer etc until you are down to the last colour. Before you stitch this on, trim the inner red layer to make sure it won’t show after you have added in the final colour. Like I said before, my hand sewing isn’t the neatest but don’t worry too much as it adds to the charm. You can try to make it neater if you want, or use a blanket stitch etc.

Step 5. At this point I want to add, that if you don’t want the back to show, you should add on another piece of white felt at this point. I didn’t think about it till afterwards, but this would be the best place to do it. See Step 7 for how I did it, but do it at this stage. You will just need another white flag shape, using the template.

Step 6. Fold over the top of the flag, towards the back. It only needs to be about 2-3cm, depending on how big the stick/straw/chopstick. Pin it in place if you have some pins, but don’t worry if not. Sew the edge, so it makes a sort of tunnel. If you are using a literal stick and it has pokey out bits, you may want to put the stick in first and then sew it. If not though, slide the stick/dowel rod etc in after you have sewn it up.

Step 7. At this point I decided I wanted to add a back to the pin flag so it would look nicer when I hung it in the window. If you’re just hanging it against a wall then this doesn’t really matter. As before, I suggest you do this before sewing in the tunnel, but if you only decide at this point like I did, cut out another white piece from felt, but trim it down from the top accordingly, so it fits the back properly. Then sew around the edges, just like you have done before. Tie some string on either end of the stick and there you go!

Please note that images have been shrunk for the sake of the tutorial post but if you click on them individually they will open slightly larger will may help you see some of the closer up details and instructions.
Feel free to drop your comments below and if you end up making a pennant, post a picture in the comments too. Obviously this project has also been shared to my instagram account closetgeekmakes and if you tag me there I’ll share your projects in my stories!




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