Want to learn how to make bunting in time for the Bank Holiday weekend? We have you covered with a super easy step by step using stuff you probably already have at home. We also have some fab TOTALLY FREE VE Day decorations that you can print off and colour in at home
So this Friday is VE Day, marking 75 years since the allies accepted Nazi Germany's surrender during World War Two. Obviously, under different circumstances, we would see parades, a procession down The Mall and tons street parties, but unfortunately that's all on pause for now.
However, that doesn't mean you can't adorn your house with some good old fashioned bunting and celebrate the day from home. So just keep scrolling to find out how to make some glorious decorations to string up in your windows, above your door, around your gate...
For more tips on how to make bunting (non-VE Day specific), check out our feature.
Where to get free VE Day decorations
Before we jump into how to make bunting, we would like to draw your attention to the VE Day website (opens in new tab). There is loads of great info over there, including veterans stories, what to watch over the weekend and even recipes to get stuck into. There is also a VE Day decorations tool kit (opens in new tab) that's full of fab printables, posters and bunting templates that you can literally just cut out. All very easy little projects that you can do with the kids and then get stuck up in the window.
How to make bunting for VE Day
You will need:
- Fabric (opens in new tab) – either cotton or poly-cotton – or paper or card and go with red, white and blue
- Dressmaker’s scissors (opens in new tab) or crimping shears (opens in new tab)
- A4 (8.26in x 11.69in) card
- 2.5cm / 0.98-inch wide bias tape (opens in new tab) or ribbon
- White cotton thread
- Sewing machine (opens in new tab) (though you can of course hand stitch with a needle if you’d prefer)
- Iron (opens in new tab)
Step one: Create a template for your bunting
To create a template for your bunting flags, take the A4 (8.26in x 11.69in) card, position it in a portrait orientation and mark the centre of the short horizontal edge (10.5cm (4.1in) across) – this is the bottom point of the flag. Then mark each side of the long vertical edges at 22cm (8.7in). These three marks are your triangle. Draw between each mark using a ruler and then cut along the lines.
Step two: Choose and measure your bunting fabric
For this we say just have a look around your house, see what scraps you can find – old clothes, tablecloths, whatever you have got already. If you are decorating specifically for VE Day go with a red white and blue theme. You could get really creative and cut strips of fabrics to sew onto your bunting to create Union Jack flags.
If you can't find any fabric you can use card to create the triangles and you will get a very similar effect just obviously your bunting won't last as long. You could draw always Union Jacks on your paper too.
Whatever you choose, hold the template onto the fabric or card and lightly draw around it in pencil. Repeat so you have two flags.
Step three: cut and line up the bunting
Use the scissors to cut around where you have marked, ensuring that the edges are crisp. Take the fabric flags and place on top of each other, with the topside of the fabric facing inwards (you are going to be turning them inside out). Pin together, staying at least 2cm (0.78in) from the edges so they don’t get caught in your sewing machine. Lay the paired flags on top of each other so you can check they will be the same size once you have finished sewing.
If you don't have a sewing machine you can just sew your two sides together using a needle and thread.
Step four: Sew together your bunting
Sew the two pieces together, using a straight stitch, 1cm (0.4in) from the edge of the fabric. Only sew the two long edges, leaving the top edge open. If using a sewing machine, then sew to 1cm (0.4in) before the bottom of the V, lift the foot and needle, turn the fabric and continue to sew up the other side of the V. Cut the excess fabric from around the point of the flag so it is easier to push to a point.
Turn the sewn flag inside out. Trim any edges at the top to ensure it is a straight line and remove any loose bits of thread.
Step five: attach your bunting to the string
If you have gone with paper triangles you can just dab a bit of glue along the top and stick it onto your ribbon – or use a stapler to attach it. If you are making fabric bunting, pin your fabric triangles to your ribbon, check they are an equal distance apart and either hand stitch or use a sewing machine to attach each one.