Paper Bunting # 3 - Flowers

Mrs Fox's Flower Bunting

Mrs Fox made this bunting for the first Fairy Tea Party.  The inspiration was Mary Blair and her amazing art direction for Disney, in particular Disney's Alice in Wonderland.  

Mary Blair concept art for Disney's Alice in Wonderland
Concept Art by Mary Blair for Disney's Alice in Wonderland

To create the flower bunting I used:

Crepe paper in pink yellow & purple plus green.
Glue, scissors, pencil
Gold glitter paint
Blue bias binding, about 10 meters.

Mrs Fox's Flower Bunting

1.  I drew designs for 3 flowers and a leaf.  On each flower  I decided which colours to use on each section and cut the shape out of card to be used as templates.  I left a tag (a square of paper) at the top of each of the largest shapes where the flowers would attach to the bias binding.

2.  I then traced and cut the shapes out onto crepe paper.  Layering the shapes one on top of the other I glued them down, creating the flowers in slightly different colour combinations.  Once the glue dried on the flowers I used a little of the gold glitter paint as highlights to cover areas where the glue was showing a little.  The nice thing about the crepe paper is that once hung it is slightly transparent and means that the back of the bunting looks almost as good as the front.  

Mrs Fox's Flower Bunting

3.  Once I had my flowers and leaves (And I also cut out some crepe paper strands to imitate slender vines) I organised how I planned to hang them from the bias binding.  

Leaving about a meter at each end I folded the bias binding in half down the length sewing it together to form a strong ribbon.  Placing the tags I had left at the top of my flowers between the bias binding with approximately 20cm between each flower, I machined them into the bias binding.  Between every few flowers I also machined either a leaf or a few vines of different length.
How to make flower bunting

At Mrs Fox's we also created paper fairy craft kits for our Fairy Tea Party and these fairies were strung onto the flower bunting. 

paper fairy


Paper Bunting # 2 - Pterasaur Bunting.

For our Prehistoric Party, we made a length of pterasuar bunting which was hung on good quality garden twine with sky (baby) blue crepe paper ribbon wrapped around.  Don't try to hang the pterasuars directly onto the crepe ribbon as it has a lot of give and will keep on stretching and sagging until the pterasaurs appear to be coming in to land.

It was incredibly easy to make, the most time consuming part being cutting out the pterasaur shapes but depending on the age of your dinosaur fan, you could simplify the design making it easier to cut.  By the time you've cut out all the shapes, you probably won't want to spend too much time painting so try using a few simple lines and highlights as finishing touches (as shown in the second picture).

I used colour card as well as an old cardboard box (which was more difficult to cut) for my flying monsters and searched for silhouettes on the internet.  I found two pictures I liked and did my best to draw the outlines onto paper which I then cut out and used as stencils.  Given that only a paleontologist would spot something amiss, there is plenty of room for artistic licence.  All I needed were;
  • paper

  • pen

  • garden twine

  • cotton

  • paintbrush

  • scissors

  • crepe ribbon

  • paints

  • google eyes
So, simply;
  1. Draw around the stencil onto your card before cutting out the pterasaur chape.

  2. Once you have say, 16, select places on the pterasurs to highlight with paint - and paint.

  3. Stick on the googly eyes.

  4. Once the paint and glue has dried, thread a needle and sew cotton through a chosen spot on the wing or back of the pterasaur, leaving a long enough length to then tie to the twine.

  5. Hang the bunting up.

  6. Wrap or entwine the crepe paper around the twine.

If you think you will have time on the day, I recommend leaving stringing the pterasaurs until the string and crepe paper is up as the cotton can get tangled.

Very simple and very much appreciated by the young party animals...

Paper Bunting # 1 - Stars & Stripes

We made this on the weekend before the party, the children did most of the painting.  It made them feel included in the preparations and excited about their coming party.  The hardest thing about this bunting is that you need lots of clear surface areas for the flags to dry between application of each layer of paint.

We used good quality garden twine to hang the bunting and brown craft paper for the flags, it looks rustic and I think is more forgiving of a slightly more messy application of paint from 3 and 6 year old fingers.  To figure out how many flags you need to make I would suggest you need to leave  120cm (48in) of string at each end to tie the bunting off and 5 flags for every meter (40inches) of string.
To make the Stars and Stripes bunting you will need:
  • paper*

  • pencil

  • ruler

  • scissors

  • red, white and blue paint

  • star stickers - like the ones they used to use on your work at school

  • hole punch

  • string or ribbon
(*we used brown craft paper because I like the brown showing through the paint.  You could use white paper and then you don’t need white paint) 

1.  Cut your paper into rectangles approximately 16cm x 18cm

2.  With a pencil draw a smaller rectangle in the top right corner of approximately 6.5cm x 8cm, then draw 6 lines. OR if you are feeling brave just do this stage freehand in white paint, it really doesn’t matter if lines are a bit wobbly or paint is blobbed on irregularly.  If you are using white paper ignore this step and go straight onto step 3 

3.  When your white paint is dry put 7 star stickers onto the white square, then using red paint add 4 red lines.

4.  Once the red paint is dry, paint a blue rectangle over the top of the stars covering your white rectangle  (or if you have used white paper straight over your stars). Once the blue paint is dry peel off your stars.  Underneath will be the star shapes in white.

5.  Now place your flag portrait in front of you and make 2 holes about 1cm from the top on the 2 outer white lines. Thread your string through the holes until you have your bunting. A knot in the string every few flags will help it hang evenly.

We cut out stars in card, covered them in silver foil and strung these every three flags or so.

Don't underestimate how much the children can do to help.  And home-made decorations are much more charming than shop bought.  Just don’t try and make them perfect, the odd mistake or messy painting looks great.
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