DIY Shabby Chic Fabric Garland

DIY Fabric Garland

I am a sentimental person, and I love re-using fabric with meaning. Fabric garland is a great DIY to give nostalgic fabric new life. You can use fabric from your wedding for your child's nursery room garland. You can use old sheets or curtains from your child's nursery for his/her big kid room. The list goes on and on. Whatever you decide to do, the results will be beautiful. 

I recently made this garland tutorial for my beautiful friend's baby shower in hopes that she can re-use the garland in her daughter's nursery, playroom or dollhouse one day. 

For this tutorial, I received help from Beau Coup's easy tutorial

DIY Fabric Garland

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For this project, you will need:

  • 4 different patterned Cotton Fabrics (1 yard each). As a reference, my garland is about 3 feet wide, each strip of fabric is about 1.5 feet long. You may need more fabric if you want to create a wider garland (or less for a shorter garland).
  • Assortment of Lace Ribbon. (3 yards total)
  • Wired Jute Craft Rope. (2 yards) You can use any rope or thick string you have. I chose to use rope with wire, because the final product was easier to hang and manipulate so the fabric strips didn't hang toward the heaviest part of the garland (middle).
  • Scissors
  • Marker
  • Ruler
  • Tip: Other than cutting the fabric, the hardest part for me was choosing the fabric. If you are going through vintage fabric or selecting new ones from the store, decide on a color palette first. I believe three colors is a good standard to go by when choosing your palette. If you don't have a palette, look for inspiration in the invitation (if it is for an event) or the room it is designed for. I brought the baby shower invitation with me when I purchased all of my fabric at Hobby Lobby. This was very helpful when finalizing the fabric. 

    DIY Fabric Garland

    Start off by trimming the rough, end pieces of the fabric. 

    DIY Fabric Garland

    Take the reverse side of the fabric and fold your fabric over twice. You should have four layers of fabric and the reverse side should be facing up. 

    DIY Fabric Garland

    Place the ruler on the end of the fabric and make 2 inch marks down the fabric seam. Your reverse side is facing up so you don't make the marks on the pretty side of the fabric. 

    DIY Fabric Garland

    Once you have made your tick marks, cut all 4 layers of fabric to create one long strip. Try to cut as straight as possible. If you need to create a guide mark with a ruler and pencil please do so. However, as with all of my DIY projects this one should be fun. The beauty in the piece is in the originality and its imperfection. 

    DIY Fabric Garland

    Continue to cut down the tick marks until you have enough fabric strips. Cutting the fabric is the most tedious part of this process and it took the longest. I folded the material over twice because this cut down on cutting time by half.  

    DIY Fabric Garland

    Once you have all of your fabric strips cut, lay out your ribbon and trim them to appropriate lengths. My ribbon hit at about 1.5 feet from the garland, so I made each strip about 3 feet since you tie the ribbon and fabric in the middle onto the rope. 

    Please keep in mind that the same rule applies and to not overthink the ribbon length. You should have varying lengths with the ribbon and fabric once you tie them on to the rope. 

    DIY Fabric Garland
    DIY Fabric Garland

    After you cut your fabric and ribbon, decide on a pattern and place the pattern to the side so you can reference it as you make the garland. 

    DIY Fabric Garland

    The original tutorial states to start tying your fabric strips and ribbon in the middle of the rope and work your way out, but I found it easier to start at one end of the rope (I left 2 feet of rope untouched at the beginning so I could hang it), and work your way down the rope.

    To create the knots, take your fabric strip in the middle and create the cow hitch knot. You want to tie the fabric in the middle of the strip so that fabric can hang on both sides of the garland to create a fuller effect. 

    DIY Fabric Garland

    Continue adding your fabric strips and ribbon until you achieve the desired width. Then display your piece and enjoy it!

    DIY Fabric Garland

    I can't wait to hear what fabric you brought back to life with this beautiful garland destined to be displayed. 

    DIY Fabric Garland