Saturday, November 28, 2009

Handcrafted Holiday ~ Recycled Pennant Flag Garland

A couple months ago my Aunt Pat sent me a package. When I opened it, I was thrilled to find tons of paper scraps. Magazine pictures, calendar pieces, art postcards, and the fronts of greeting cards she liked... tucked away lovingly in plastic bags or envelopes. Just like I do.

My two aunts and my mom all have a similar love for the simple things. Paper, lace, bits of fabric... they have all collected these things, and when the collections are no longer useful to them, they ask me if I want them.

I think these are the most precious of 'vintage' collections. I feel a connection to the women in my family as I store away the scraps of sweaters, bits of lace from old pillow cases, and words I found inspirational cut out of my favorite magazines. We are kindred spirits... the few of us that create these life/love collections. And I find so much joy in getting to know the mamas that have come before me through using their collections to make beautiful things for my spaces.

This week it is a garland. I had SO much fun going through all my aunt's favorite bits of paper and cutting them into these triangles. First I made a pattern out of a piece of thick card. Then I cut out as many as I could of these tiny triangles (each one is about 2 inches long at the point) and then sewed them together on my sewing machine, one at a time.

I made it long enough for the tree, but we don't have a tree yet, so currently it is hanging down our hallway. Making another space brighter because of what was essentially garbage. I love it.

I love the look of it, and I love that I got to go through each piece that my aunt loved, and find the ones that I love. I got to know her a little bit more; sitting on my bed, listening to music, quietly cutting out tiny triangles out of the bits and pieces of paper she had collected.

I think it turned out rather beautiful. I can't wait to see it on the tree!

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13 comments:

Patzi said...

loving that idea!
I just showed it to my daughter and she will make one out of my husbands old train calenders for his birthday!

Sarah said...

Oooh I can totally imagine doing this with birthday cards each year when the birthday is past but to pull out for decoration and memory the following years.....looks great!

Val in the Rose Garden said...

What a great idea! I love the idea of a themed birthday banner. I will have to keep that in mind for my Jan baby. ;)

Blessings,

Val

Val in the Rose Garden said...

Thanks Sarah. I thought it was so cute. You have a similar hallway and it reminded me of when you had the cards all up and down the hall a couple years back. :) That looked great too.

Love Val

The Magic Onions said...

This is a gorgeous idea!! It looks so lovely.
And also wanted to say how much I love the poem 'Leaves'... magical.
Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Blessings and magic.

Chell said...

I love these and the story behind them..

Kim Hosey said...

What a lovely idea! This is really wonderful; I've got to try it.

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Jen said...

I wonder if it would work with woven fabric, or if it would require stabilizer of some sort? I don't have much going on around here in terms of paper, so I'm trying to figure out a means of making this.

Thanks Val. I glean many ideas and even more inspiration from you!

Val in the Rose Garden said...

Jen, I looked on google for you and here is directions for a fabric one. You could probably scale it down to make it tiny like mine for the tree if you wanted. Hope that helps!

http://www.lovetosew.com/fabricpennantflags.htm

Please comment and post a link if you do end up doing it. I would love to see! It would last longer than mine (esp with my cats). :)

Blessings,

Val

Jen said...

Thank you! I am going to try that.

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Jen said...

Fabric banners done! I just posted pics on my blog.