How to Make Flags of the World Bunting or Banners on the Cricut or Silhouette
I made flag bunting last year for the World Cup semi-finals (sigh…still, well done France!) and I realised that lots of people sell bunting online…so this could be a great project to add to your online shop repertoire! It occurred to me to revisit this project last week when friend mentioned they were having a party for the Eurovision Song Contest. Since I got my cutting machines, party decor is never really off my mind (!)…and then I thought it could be a great thing to share with you.
After all – there are lots of occasions when you might use national flag bunting – maybe your country’s National or Independence Day, or a sports tournament. In the UK, we’d mainly see our flag for a Royal Wedding or visit or a Jubilee – though we have four constituent nations, so I’ve included flags for those too (note for non-UK residents: you don’t want to wave a Union Flag if you’re lucky enough to watch the might Wales play rugby!) and an EU flag.
Anyway – I think my list of flags is pretty exhaustive, but if there are any flags you’d like me to add to the file please let me know. Your cutting machine is FANTASTIC at making this stuff – cheaply and quickly…so let’s begin!
- Plain white paper or lightweight cardstock
- Our file – which is free below:
- Printer (for this I used my inkjet printer, a HP Envy 4725)
- Cutting Machine (I used a Cricut Maker with a Fine Point Blade)
Preparing the Files:
- Unzip the file – it’ll be called internationalflags.zip. To do this, all you have to do is double-click on the file if you’re on a Mac, though if you’re on a PC you may have to use Winzip or Winrar (or similar!) Once you’ve done this, you’ll see a folder called ‘International Flags’ in your downloads. It’ll be full of .png files.
- In Design Space, click on ‘Upload Images’ in the left-hand margin, and ‘Browse’. Go into your ‘International Flags’ folder and click on the flag you want to make. For this example, I will choose the flag of India. Once you’ve chosen that, you will be asked to choose an ‘Image Type’. More often than not, I choose ‘Complex’ – and I have in this case! Once done, click on the green ‘Continue’ button at the bottom right of the screen.
- Now you’ll be on the ‘Select and Erase’ screen. You don’t need to alter your flag, so click on ‘Continue’ again.
- You’ll be given the choice of importing your flag as a Print and Cut image or a cut file. Click on the ‘Print and Cut’ version and ‘Save’ (the green button at the bottom right).
- Your flag will then appear on your canvas. Like this!Click on the ‘Shapes’ icon in the left-hand margin, and select a square from the pop-up. Click on the padlock at the bottom left of the square (you’ll see that when you do this, the button at the bottom right will change to green). Now, you can resize the square out of proportion (that is – you can make it a rectangle if you want!) In the top menu bar, the padlock show as unlocked, too. In the box next to the padlock, where it says ‘H’ (for height!) type the number showing alongside the flag. You can see, in my image, that this is 2.167, so that’s what I’m going to do: Now that my rectangle is exactly the same height as my flag, I am going to change the width so it’s LONGER than the flag. I want it to be around 3/4 inch wider – so I’m just going to round it up to 4″ (by typing ‘4’ in the box at the top where it says ‘W’). Now, click on the grey box next to ‘Cut’ at the top (beneath ‘Linetype’) and click on the white box. Your rectangle on the canvas will change colour:
- With the rectangle still selected, left-click and click on the flag. Choose ‘Align’ from the top menu bar and then select ‘Align Right’ from the dropdown:
- Your flag will probably have disappeared behind the rectangle now! Don’t worry though – now, again from the Align bar choose ‘Center Vertically’ and the white rectangle will move over the flag a bit more!
- Now, click away from the rectangle and flag, and then select the white rectangle again by clicking on it. Choose ‘Arrange from the top menu bar and click on ‘Send to Back’:
- Left click and drag over the whole thing, and choose ‘Flatten’ from the bottom of the right-hand menu bar. You will hardly notice a change, but the giveaway sign will be that the black outline will disappear from the edge of your rectangle, and there’s one item in the right-hand margin, set to ‘Print and Cut’!
- Now’s the time to resize your flag. Because you flattened it, the padlock is switched on again (which is good – we don’t want to stretch the flag out of proportion!) Click on the flag/rectangle and either pull on the arrow at the bottom right or change the measurements in the top of the screen to change the size of your flag. Bear in mind, though, that as well as your requirements/paper size etc, you have to think of the limits of print and cut. This means that each flag needs to be no larger than 6.75″ by 9.25″ (this can be width OR height – it just has to fit within these dimensions!) Of course, if you’re making it smaller, you can fit two within the space!
- ‘Click on Make It!’
- If you continue, you’ll get to choose your settings (in my case, ‘Copy Paper’ at normal pressure.’ The result will be a flag with a white section on the left.
Assembling the Bunting:
- Fold over the top of the flags, where the ‘extra’ (non-flag!) white part appears. Apply a thin layer of glue on the flag across the width of the flag – about half an inch below the fold – as shown:
- Lay the ribbon or twine across the flag, just beneath the fold.
- Fold over the flap and affix to the back of the flag.
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