Tie Dye Diva Free Photo Pocket Flag Bunting Tutorial

The Tie Dye Diva family loves to celebrate! I made this reusable fabric bunting for our family birthdays and other occasions. The idea came to me the day before my youngest's second birthday (which is today - happy birthday, my little buddy!) and so I put a photo on it so he would know exactly whose special day it was without having to read a thing. The photo is in a clear vinyl pouch so it can be removed and replaced with another birthday boy or girl’s photo, name, or other greeting for non-birthday occasions.

Here’s how to make your Tie Dye Diva Photo Pocket Flag Bunting:

Makes one banner about 84" long.

You’ll need:
• 1 package (3 yards) Double Fold Bias Quilt Binding (7/8” wide)
• fabric scraps at least 6.5" x 7.5”
• 2 pieces clear vinyl 7.5” x 5.5” - I used 4 mm thickness.You can find this at any regular fabric store.
• 4" x 6" Photo of your loved one, birthday greeting or other personalized message

First, make a template out of cardboard to make cutting your flags easy. Make it 6.5” across the top, then measure down from the center point (hint: the 3.25” mark) 7.5" and mark this spot. Connect the lines to form a triangle and cut it out.

Next, raid your scrap bin (you can see mine under the template, yikes!)! I made a “boy side” and a “girl side” to the banner. You could also make a ‘fourth of july' side and a 'valentines day’ side, or whatever you like. Cut 12 triangles for each side of the bunting, 24 in all.

If your scrap bin looks like mine, you’ll need to press the triangles before you sew. Of course, it’s a much better idea to press before you cut but this was a nap-time project for me so I pressed later. Then I piled them into my ‘girl’ and ‘boy’ piles and just like a little fabric-flag promenade, matched one from each pile, right sides together.

You only need to sew the two longer edges of the triangle - use a 1/4” seam allowance. For a nice point, stop a little before the tip, take 2 or 3 stitches across, then continue down the other side.

Clip the tip and then turn, poking the tip out nicely. Press again, and don’t skip it this time. It would be a nice touch to topstitch those two edges if you had the time. Repeat for all 12 flags.

Now, looking only at your ‘girl’ or ‘boy’ side, arrange them in an order you like, remembering that there will be 6 to the left of the photo and 6 to the right, so balance the two sides nicely. Then flip the whole pile over and look at the other side to make sure it looks nice too. Set your flags aside, keeping them in order.

Cut 3 pieces of your quilt binding 5.5” long and one piece 7.5” long*.
*read ahead, you may want to cut it a little longer. Keep the big piece too, that's what all your flags will hang from.

To form the photo pocket, enclose a short edge of each vinyl piece in one of your short pieces (5.5") of bias binding and sew along the edge. Here’s the great thing – no need to fear sewing on vinyl, don’t get out your Teflon walking foot or tissue paper or anything else. Your presser foot will never touch the vinyl.

See? Here’s a picture of my presser foot, not touching the vinyl at all.

Now lay these pieces with the bound edges together, this will be the opening on the side where you slide the photos in and out. Then bind BOTH of the opposite short edges together in the remaining short piece of bias binding and sew. To be clear, you're enclosing two vinyl edges in one bias tape piece.

Lastly, enclose both bottom edges and sew.

I left raw edges; I don’t intend to ever wash the bunting, and the bias would not fray much anyway. If you don’t like this look, you can cut it a little longer than 7.5” and turn each raw edge inside before you sew it.

Now find the center of your long piece of bias binding and the center of your photo pocket. Enclose the top edge of both pieces of vinyl in the bias binding and sew it down.

You can stop here and pin all your flags in place if you want to. I didn’t. I just stopped as I approached the edge of the photo pocket with my needle down, opened up the binding, and tucked the next flag in place, then stopped again near the end of the flag and tucked in another. Because we are starting in the middle, begin with flag #7 in your pile and work to the end.

Then turn the bunting around and again, begin in the middle with flag #6 and work out to the other end. If you have enough binding, you can tuck the ends inside to finish them.

I added a grommet to each end because with 3 kids and a family who likes to celebrate everything I have a feeling we’ll be putting it up and taking it down quite a bit.

Or maybe we’ll just leave it up and change the pocket message from time to time.

I hope you enjoy this free tutorial. Feel free to link to it – tweet it, Facebook it, etc. but please don’t copy it or the photos in it in any form, or repost it on your own site or anyone else’s. You’re welcome to use it for personal use or for sale. Please come visit my instant download PDF pattern site www.tiedyedivapatterns.com for bunches and bunches of sewing pattern PDFs for kids, baby, home and more.

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