Make Your Own Camp Banner!
This summer a lot of us are staying home to save money. Maybe you’re not sending your kids off to summer camp but that doesn’t mean they need to stay inside and watch tv all day. How about hosting a summer camp right in your own home? Or just pretend to. Here’s a fun banner you and your kids can make that will bring the fun of summer camp right into your own home!
First you’ll need to gather your supplies:
1. Burlap. Burlap is pretty easy to find these days at your local fabric or craft store and it doesn’t smell like gasoline like it used to. To make a large banner you’ll need roughly a half yard but you can easily buy less and make do.
3. Yarn needles (make sure the eye-hole is big enough to thread your yarn)
4. Yarn or string
5. Felt in campy colors
6. Sharp scissors* to cut felt (Test them, not all scissors are created equal. Now might be a good time to invest in some trusty fabric scissors.)
7. Bits and bobs to decorate with (We used shells and plastic deer but anything that will stick with glue will work.)
8. A hot glue gun* or thick craft glue (just keep in mind drying times may vary with different glues)
First you’ll want to cut your burlap to a good banner size. Something big enough to hang on the wall and create some real estate to decorate on. Next take your stick and lay it lengthwise across the top. Fold your burlap over the stick with a good amount of seam allowance (2-4 inches).
Now take your yarn and sew the flap down and over the stick, kind of like sewing a curtain on a curtain rod but without the gathers. Any stitch will do. You can just sew it straight across or get fancy with cross-stitches or even something flowery.
Yarn needles are not especially sharp and you can even use a blunt-nosed needle here if you like. Go ahead and let your child try their hand at sewing. You’ll be surprised at how quickly they catch on and it’s great for their motor skills.
Now you’re ready to decorate! You might want to cut some “camp” shapes (trees, camp fire, log cabin, logs) ahead of time out of felt for your children to arrange or if they are skilled with scissors, let them cut their own. Felt can be a bit fussy at times so be ready to help even up edges for them if they need it.
Or go crazy like I did with some mad felt lettering skillz! Actually, it wasn’t that hard.
When you’re done arranging the scene, you can either glue the pieces on with some white craft glue or use a trusty hot glue gun like I do. Just be careful not to let children touch the hot glue because it burns! Also, you might want to put down a protective covering on your work surface before you glue because it will soak through the burlap.
Or you might want to sew your decorations on. If the kids like sewing, you might as well channel Laura Ingalls Wilder and while away the afternoon stitching.
When you’re done, hang your banner and enjoy!
And then get ready to make some s’mores because you know they’ll be asking!
Difficulty Level: Medium – Difficult
Appropriate Age levels: Six and Up
* Please make sure a responsible adult is on hand for the steps involving a hot glue gun or sharp scissors. Felt can be difficult to cut with anything other than sharp scissors so either cut the shapes for your children ahead of time or make sure you are watching them carefully.