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{One Cozy Snow Day ~ Valentine’s Day Burlap Banner}

tutorial_burlapvalentinebannerI love snow days.  I really do.  For as long as I can remember, I have loved seeing those first few flakes flutter down with the hopes of getting snowed in.  Most of my friends hate the stuff, but I don’t.  Aside from the dangers of driving in it and the hassle of shoveling it, there’s really nothing I have to complain about.  I admit…I’m pretty lucky.  I work for the government and today, the Governor called a state of emergency and closed all offices.  We were supposed to get a “crippling blizzard” named Juno, but what actually arrived were about 5 or 6″.  No biggie.  My husband does the shoveling, and my father-in-law owns a snow blower and lives a few houses down, so I never have to do any of the hard labor.  I get to play in the snow with my kids, make hot chocolate for them, and bake cookies.

My son and I went to a hill at the end of our street this morning and had loads of fun literally throwing ourselves onto our sled.  A few times he was actually on my back.  I think I pulled a few muscles and I am certain that I’ll feel it in the morning.  I’m getting too old for these kinds of shenanigans.  They say kids keep you young.  I say kids make you blatantly aware of just how old you are.

Anyway, snow days mean I also get to craft!  This is the best part because it’s rare for me to have spare time to break out a bunch of craft supplies and cover my entire kitchen table.  So here’s how I made this cute banner, just in time for Valentine’s Day:

One Cozy Nest ~ Burlap Valentine's Day Banner

One Cozy Nest ~ Burlap Valentine’s Day Banner

You will need:

  • straight edge and cutting mat
  • burlap fabric or garland
  • scissors and rotary cutter if you have one
  • hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • twine
  • acrylic paint (white & red)
  • glitter (red)
  • glitter glue (gold)
  • red felt tip pen or marker
  • small piece of card stock or cardboard
  • wide paint brush
  • narrow paint brush
  • paper plates

    wide brush, narrow artist's brush, and a round sponge brush for making polka dots

    wide brush, narrow artist’s brush, and a round sponge brush for making polka dots

  1. Use your scissors or your rotary cutter and straight edge to cut the burlap into 3.5″ X 5″ sections.  Always cut an odd number of pieces.  I made a couple different lengths of banners, some had 5 flags and some had 7.  I used burlap garland that came in a roll from my local Michaels craft store.  It was hemmed on both long edges already, so it’s perfect for this project because there’s less fraying of the burlap.
    Ashland brand burlap garland

    Ashland brand Burlap Garland, from Michaels. 5″ wide, hemmed on both edges.

    rotary cutter, straight edge, cutting mat

    rotary cutter, straight edge, cutting mat

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    burlap pieces, measuring 3.5″ X 5″

     

    hemmed edge of garland

    see how the edge is hemmed so nicely?

    2.  Use your wide bristled paint brush to white wash the strips of burlap.  I squirt little puddles of paint onto paper plates for easy clean up.   I first tried using a wide sponge brush, but it resulted in too many thick globs of paint.  The look you want to achieve is s light white wash.  Dab your brush into the white paint and then get most of it off by dabbing it onto the paper plate in another area.  Then drag your brush along the surface of the burlap in one direction, over and over.  Repeat on all of the pieces of burlap and allow to dry.  You can use a blow dryer on the warm setting to speed it up, but since you’re only applying a little bit of paint, it will dry pretty quickly…about 10 minutes or so.

    white wash the burlap

    white wash the burlap using a wide paintbrush and white acrylic paint

    3.  Draw a tiny dot about an inch from the bottom edge of the burlap in the center.  Use your scissors to cut a notch, starting from one corner and ending at the dot.  Repeat on the other side.  You’ll have a nice triangle shape notch at the bottom of your burlap.

cut a notch into the bottoms

cut a notch into the bottoms of your white-washed burlap pieces

4.  Cut out a heart shape from a piece of card stock or cardboard.  Using a red felt tip pen or marker, center the heart onto each piece of burlap and trace it all the way around.

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trace a heart shape onto each flag using a red pen or marker

5.  Using your narrow paint brush, fill in each heart with red paint.  You can brush it on lightly, as we did with the white paint, or you can fill it in completely, like I have.

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fill in each heart shape using your narrow paint brush and red acrylic paint

6.  Before the paint dries, carefully sprinkle your red glitter onto the heart.  Use your finger to spread it around and press it into the paint.  The wet paint will act as a sort of glue to hold the glitter on.  An alternate technique could be allowing the red paint to dry, then brushing the red heart with glitter glue (I like Martha Stewart’s brand), then sprinkling the glitter on that.  My technique was just easier and quicker.  Allow the glittered hearts to dry for about an hour or so.  You may want to give them an extra shake once they dry to make sure you get all of the excess glitter off.

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carefully sprinkle glitter onto the wet red paint, spread it around with your finger

 

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shake the excess glitter off onto a paper plate

7.  Optional:  Use gold glitter glue to draw an arrow through your heart.  Allow to dry for several hours.  It goes on puffy, but will dry flat.  Whenever I use this stuff, I let my project dry overnight.  For this particular project, I assembled the banner completely, then added the gold arrow and set it aside for the night.

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allow glitter glue to dry for several hours or overnight

8.  Now you’re ready to assemble your Valentine’s Day banner!  Heat up your glue gun and get your twine ready.  You’ll need 2″ of space between each flag plus several inches on each end of the banner to tie to whatever you want it to hang from.  I simply taped mine to a little shelf I have in my kitchen, but you could also attach it to a door frame, a window frame, flower box, wall, mantle, etc.  My example banner is 7 flags long so I cut my twine about 75″ long.  For a 5-flag banner, you’ll need 60″ of twine.

8.  Find the middle of your twine.  This is where you want to glue your middle flag.  If your middle flag has a gold arrow on it, use this one.  Lay your flag face down and lay down a bead of hot glue all the way across the top edge.  Then, holding the twine taught with your two hands, press it down into the line of glue, holding it there for several seconds.

lay the twine down on top of the hot glue strip

lay the twine down on top of the hot glue strip

9.  Leave 2″ of space between each flag, making sure you glue one flag on each side of your middle one, continuing in this manner so your banner is balanced.

leave 2" between each flag

leave 2″ between each flag

10.  You can make different variations to this banner by using a small round sponge brush to make polka dots.

One Cozy Nest ~ Burlap Valentine's Day Banner

One Cozy Nest ~ Burlap Valentine’s Day Banner

you can use a small round sponge brush to create polka-dotted flags as well

you can use a small round sponge brush to create polka-dotted flags as well

These banners will be available for sale in my Etsy shop, One Cozy Nest and at Church Street Art & Craft in Mt. Holly, NJ.  Drop me a line and let me know what you think of my tutorial.  Happy Snow Day!

As Always, Stay Cozy!

Mandy