Last year I decided my mantel needed some sprucing up, so I took about 15 minutes to create a burlap banner using some simple burlap ribbon and twine. It hung over the fireplace during Thanksgiving and satisfied my need for something easy and fall-like.
But this year, I decided it needed a little somethin’, somethin’ – especially because the burlap sort of blends in with the tiles surrounding my fireplace. So I went to town creating a stencil of the word “autumn” and painting it on my banner using white acrylic paint. The result was enough to make me go “yippee!” It looks 10 times better than it did last year and the upgrade literally took me 30 minutes.
Feeling in the mood for a little autumn DIYing? To make this banner in under an hour, here’s what you’ll need:
- Burlap ribbon (mine is 6″ wide)
- Twine/Hemp Cord
- Big needle (I used a large plastic crochet needle)
- White acrylic paint
- “Autumn” stencil template (download here)
- Xacto knife
- Cut 8″ pieces from your 6″ ribbon (or adjust to size according to your ribbon width). If you’d like, vary the bottom edge of each piece to create different shapes like mine (some at an angle, some in a triangle point, some with an inverted triangle).
- Thread your needle with the twine and sew a couple of stitches through the top edge of each banner piece (make sure not to get too close to the edge since burlap unravels; 1″ is a safe margin). Keep threading banner pieces until you have achieved your desire banner length.
- Cut out your stencils with an Xacto knife from the download provided above, or make your own. My letters are about 3″ x 3″ in a serif font (Hoefler Text).
- Lay each letter stencil on top of a banner piece one by one and paint over the stencil with white acrylic paint and a wide brush. I used a stippling effect (dabbing up and down inside of sweeping side to side) when painting to keep my paint within the stencil. Each time you paint a new letter, lay down a fresh piece of newspaper or scrap paper underneath because burlap is very porous and the paint will soak through each time you stencil. If your banner has more than 6 pieces, you’ll have to center the word “autumn” and surround it with blank banner pieces.
- The best part is you get immediate satisfaction – since the banner needs to hang to dry, you can put it up in its final resting spot and enjoy it right away!
Need a visual?
Here’s a quick little video tutorial that I put together for the stenciling/painting process of the banner. It’s not rocket science, but sometimes a visual helps!