One day, I was in one of my favorite thrift stores, and I found some small wooden spools. They looked kind of like these:
I thought they looked interesting – cool, vintage, industrial – but wasn’t sure what they were or what to do with them. So, I decided to leave them at the store and think about it.
I thought about them.
And thought about them.
And I decided I really, really wanted them after all.
And you know what happened next… I went back to the thrift store and they were gone. (Sigh.)
So, imagine my surprise when my lovely friend Jeanie from Create and Babble sent me these spools for Swap It Like It’s Hot!
“Swap It Like It’s Hot” is a week’s worth of DIY and repurposing goodness! It was started and is organized by the fabulous Charlotte of Ciburbanity, and here’s how it works:
There are twenty-nine bloggers who are participating in this Swap. Each blogger goes to a thrift store, estate sale, or any kind of second-hand sale/store and purchases no more than $10-$15 worth of goodies that can be made over. That blogger then sends those items to the next blogger on the list. That person then has to make over the items sent into something fabulous and amazing.
Now, with this swap item, there’s a bit of a catch.
I didn’t want to make them over! I love them just the way they are. Bookends maybe? Mantel decoration?
So, I kind of compromised. I made them over, but without changing a thing about them.
These vintage spools make the perfect holder for my DIY pennant banner!
Here’s how I made the banner:
Decorative paper – I used this paper, from JoAnn, but you could use anything, even fabric.
Twine or yarn (to hang the banner)
Sharpie pen or paint pen
Wooden dowel(s) – I had this in my scrap wood pile. I used one 7/8-in. dowel, 36 inches long, and cut it in half. If you need to buy one at the hardware store, take the spool with you and find the size that fits in the hole in the spool.
Two small nails
Vintage spools – these held shoe laces!
(1) Choose the paper and cut the paper into pennant flags.
Pick which paper you want to make into flags. I chose a mixture of patterns and colors for Halloween.
Find the halfway point at the bottom edge of the paper and make a small pencil mark there. Then draw a line from that point to the right corner of the paper, then do the same with the left side. Cut the paper along the lines to create a triangle.
Do that for each sheet.
(2) Write on the pennants.
If you are going to spell something out with the flags, now is the time to write on them. I used a gold sharpie for the letters on my pennants, but you could use a paint pen as well.
I wrote out “SPOOKY” for Halloween, but I also made one that says “Give Thanks” for Thanksgiving! You could do this for any holiday or occasion – the sky’s the limit!
You can do this after you glue the pennants to the twine, but it’s much easier to do it when they’re not attached to anything yet.
(3) Arrange and glue the pennants to the twine.
Get the pennants how you want them – I wanted the corners overlapping a bit, and I wanted the banner to curve a little. Once you have everything where you want it, turn the pennants over – you are gluing the twine to the back of the pennants – and run a line of hot glue about an inch or so from the top edge of the pennant. Press the twine into the glue.
To make sure the pennants were securely attached to the twine, I added a few extra beads of hot glue over the top of the twine.
(4) Prepare the dowels.
First, cut the dowel to the size you want. Each dowel needs to be long enough to fit into the spools and be the right height for the banner to hang. I used a 36-inch-long dowel and cut it in half using a hand saw (not a power tool – that would be too much for this small dowel). That was perfect.
Next, nail a small nail into the top of each dowel. This is where you’ll tie the twine to hang the banner.
Last, if you want to paint the dowels, now would be the time to do that!
(5) Hang the banner.
Tie one end of the twine to the nail in each dowel. Make sure you tie it tight enough for the banner to hang the way you want. Trim any extra twine after tying. Place the dowels in the holes in each spool, making sure that the cool, funky, vintage label is face up for all to admire.
And that’s it!
I love this project because (a) you can change the banner for any holiday or occasion; and (b) I didn’t change (or worse, ruin!) the spools! I can still decide I just want to use them for bookends and I won’t have to do anything other than remove the dowels from the holes.
You HAVE to check out the other bloggers’ projects for the Swap, too! They are amazing! You can find them here:
Next up today is my beautiful friend, Jessica, at Gourley Girl and Guy! Head on over…