Wednesday, October 22, 2014

How To... Make a Hanging Halloween Decoration


You will need

A fallen branch collected from a woodland walk - trim off any unwanted bits and let it dry out before using
a couple of metres of ribbon
orange and black felt
card and paper for templates
basic sewing kit (needle, thread, pins)

Start by making your templates - you can draw them free hand like I did or try Googling 'Halloween Templates' for downloadable/printable templates.  I drew half images on the fold of a cereal box. Cut the half image out, place it along the fold of a piece of paper then draw around the shape.

 Cut around the image leaving a half centimetre or so margin around the line you have drawn (I'll explain why in a mo), then open out the paper piece, flip the template over (if you have used an old cereal box like me, so the printed side of the card is facing up), line it up and draw the other half of your template in.  You will need one paper template for each felt piece you want (I used 4 bats, 3 pumpkins and 2 cats)

Now pin your paper templates to your felt.

When cutting felt shapes out it can be quite tricky to get a good crisp line. When you cut through both paper AND felt it it much easier, this is why you need that little half cm margin!

If you prefer you can just make card templates and draw round them straight onto the felt (biros are good for this) but I prefer this slightly more labour intensive method...

Arrange your felt pieces along lengths of ribbon. I used this lovely black and white spotty ribbon from the Jane Means collection - perfect for Halloween crafting! Make your hangers different lengths and arrange the shapes until you are happy with the way they balance out. Then pin them into place, making sure each piece is central on the ribbon.

Stitch the pieces into place using a simple running stitch (be careful not to pull the thread to tight or the ribbon will pucker up)

I love the contrast of this bright green vintage thread from Nan's sewing box!

Now loop your ribbon lengths over your branch and pin then stitch into place.

Tie each end of a length of thread, knitting yarn or string to each end of the branch to hang your Halloween decoration by.

We added some pompoms too... just for good measure!

This super simple Halloween hanging decoration would be an ideal half-term craft project for older children. You can use coloured papers instead of felt if you want; try a garden cane or even a wrap a coat hanger in washi tape or crepe paper to hang your ribbons from.  Add pipe cleaner legs to turn the pompoms into black fluffy spiders for extra spook-factor...

Our hanger will probably end up in the kitchen window, casting spooky shadows across the front path to welcome trick or treaters on Halloween night. If you do the same, make sure you don't hang it near an open flame such as a flickering candle - we don't want any accidents!

Wishing you all a Spooktastic Halloween!

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