How to Create Sewn Paper Garland
Imaginative Crafts, Do-It-Yourself Projects and Video Tutorials by Robert Mahar, robert-mahar.com
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Paper punch (optional)**
*Source for paper used in video: http://www.paper-source.com/cgi-bin/p…
**Source for paper punch used in video: http://www.joann.com/fiskars-x-large-squeeze-punch-seal-of-approval/1381623.html#q=fiskars+large+punch&start=5
1. Using a paper punch or a pair of scissors cut out a series of shapes using the paper of your choice. I chose to use a light weight paper (text weight, similar to the weight of standard copy paper) in a variety of solid colors. The numbers of pieces you’ll need will vary according to the desired length of your garland. I created a 6′ long garland, using 2″ diameter scalloped circles — roughly 35 pairs of circles were used.
2. Thread your sewing machine and set it up to execute a simple straight stitch.
3. Cut two 8″ lengths of ribbon to create hanging loops on both ends of the garland. I used a ¼” wide grosgrain ribbon. Take one piece of ribbon, fold it in half and sandwich the cut ends between two pieces of your cut/punched paper. Carefully place these beneath your sewing machine presser foot, create a couple of back stitches to lock the thread in place and then sew a straight line away from the ribbon loop, down the center of the paper pieces.
4. Allow the machine to sew a couple of stitches beyond the paper pieces and then feed in your next pair of shapes, again sewing a straight line right through the center of the pair. Continuing doing this until you’ve reached the desired length of your garland. Remember to allow the machine to sew a couple of stitches between each of the pair of paper shapes — these couple of stitches won’t be sewing into any material, the thread will just wrap around itself — this prevents us from creating a solid band of paper, but rather individual elements that will move nicely when the garland is hung.
5. When you’ve sewn your desired length of garland, finish it off with a second hanging loop created in the same fashion as the first. Trim any thread tails from both ends of the garland.
6. Lay your sewn garland flat on your work surface. Start with the first paper pair at one end and fold the top piece up along the sewn seam line. Flip the pair over and fold the second piece in the same way. Continue folding all of the sewn paper pair in your garland. This creates three-dimensional shapes that will give more volume and body to your finished garland.
7. Hang and enjoy!
· Experiment with a wide variety of light weight papers when creating this garland — salvaged pages from old damaged books, magazine pages, newspaper, old holiday and birthday cards and even inexpensive construction paper.
· Avoid thick cardstock, so as not to damage your sewing machine.
· These garlands can be created in a variety of shapes and color ways to coordinate with any occasion!