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Thread: Any tips on making a flag?

  1. #1
    Super Member Jo M's Avatar
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    Any tips on making a flag?

    I've been asked to make a Canadian flag. I know, just because you can quilt, everyone thinks you can make/sew anything. LOL I told her I would do some research on it to see if it was something I could do. You're my research...
    It's an easy enough design, but
    1) I don't know what kind of fabric to use;
    2) how do I make it double-sided?
    She said it would be displayed in a window on Canadian holidays, so it won't be outside. Any hint, tips or suggestions? Or do I just tell her I really don't want to attempt it?
    Jo

  2. #2
    Super Member mermaid's Avatar
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    Easy to do--I make outside flags all the time and change them often. I use parachute nylon found at Hancock's (& other stores. Start with a hemmed-4-sides (it won't need the big hem for a pole)As you create the design, one piece at a time, think of it as layering...stitching around the pattern piece with small stitches, then carefully trim away the background fabric behind the sewn piece and trim excess fabric from outside the stitching line. Continue ''layering"--one piece at a time and always cutting away the background so you are left with only one layer when finished. Then do a close zigzag that is wide enough to cover all the stitched seams for stability. Here is one I did last wkend--I copied an embroidery design. Drew free hand on blank newsprint. You can cut your design into parts and use them atop the diff color fabrics to stitch in place. I haven't done very well explaining, have I?Name:  flag.jpg
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  3. #3
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    This might help you out and some patterns are FREE:
    https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#q...+quilt+pattern
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  4. #4
    Super Member mermaid's Avatar
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    Had not hemmed when pix taken. Steps: started with red, sewed white cloud--cut away red behind. Next went the yellow sun..cut away white behind arm and 'ray' and red behind the yellow, except for mouth (cut away yellow and left red behind. Next was the Navy blue for sunglasses lens--cut away yellow behind..added frames/same steps. Heavy ZZ over all drawn lines and over all joinings. You are left with a single layer of fabric with the same design on both sides.

  5. #5
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    Thanks, Mermaid. I never thought I could make a flag, but this is doable.

  6. #6
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    My tip would be....just buy a flag. The flag material is not cheap and then there is the work involved.

  7. #7
    Super Member mermaid's Avatar
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    Flags are not cheap and making your own gives satisfaction of having just exactly what you want to express. My 'sunshine' flag represents how hot it has been here in Mid TN, it is hanging at the moment, but was actually made to cheer us when snow is on the ground. I like putting my personal touch on flags, and always know that no one will have the same in their yard.It only takes a yd of fabric for the background, and lots of scraps for building other flags. I buy at least 5 colors when I shop. However, the quality of the para nylon is not as good as once was, and weather can shorten the lifespan.

  8. #8
    Super Member Jo M's Avatar
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    Thanks, mermaid!
    Great instructions and cute flag. I think I'll give it a try, thanks to you.
    Jo

  9. #9
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    The typical 'garden flag' fabric is also known as rip-stop nylon. I would think the maple leaf design would be fairly easy to accomplish. If it's to be two sided; I'd make 2 identical flags, sew around the 3 outside edges; turn; sew closed the opening. Keep in mind - use a LOW TEMP on your iron. The rip-stop nylon melts at relatively low temps.

  10. #10
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    You might want to use a stabilizer when you do the zigzag around your maple leaf. It should help make your stitches lie perfectly flat. I think the tear-away is best, but that's just my opinion.
    Sometimes I try to act "normal," but it gets boring so I just go back to being myself.

  11. #11
    Super Member AZ Jane's Avatar
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    I would compare the costs before I gave a definite yes or no. Hanging in a window will soon become sun damaged and faded. It might make more sense to purchase an actual flag and replace as needed.
    Better to do something imperfectly, than nothing perfectly.
    Done is better than perfect.

  12. #12
    Super Member mermaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by youngduncan View Post
    You might want to use a stabilizer when you do the zigzag around your maple leaf. It should help make your stitches lie perfectly flat. I think the tear-away is best, but that's just my opinion.
    I have never found a need to use stabilizer, but if I did, I would use the WSS (the clear film) or a washaway paper and dip the flag in water after finishing. The seams in nylon are delicate (to some extent) and I'd be wary of tearing away stabilizer for fear of pulling seams apart. Just my fear. My flags sometimes hang outside in all weather for 2 or 3 months--just because I can't think of an appropriate replacement (or because I procrastinate!). I still have flags made before 1998. Okay. I need to do a clean-out! Some are getting very faded.

  13. #13
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    Google 'Canadian flag' and see how much a premade one costs. Does this person think fabric is still 39cents a yard? I think that one bought already made would be less expensive or close...and without all the work. Do what you enjoy, not what others expect you to do. JMO
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

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