Monday, March 19, 2012

Prayer Flag Project Beginnings

In June of 2011, Vivika Hansen DeNegre started The Prayer Flag Project. She invited people from around the world to to join her in making Prayer Flags. Each flag is created in the artists own style, then hung outside for a while, its words and sentiment dissolving into the wind and being spread to all whom the wind touches. They are a living, breathing, kinetic journal of our hopes, dreams and concerns.
I saw the prayer flags over here at the Prayer Flag Project and I fell in love with the idea. I recently was blessed with an abundance of discarded fabric sample books and decided that this would be a perfect activity for our women's retreat this fall. Since some of our ladies are not as crafty as others, I chose some print fabrics as well as some solids to use as backgrounds for the flags. I see that many of the flag makers use muslin and then create their own backgrounds. I thought this would be too daunting for our group, but choosing from an abundance of fabrics would be fun and easy.

So Here is how I started:

I gathered the various sample books and removed the fabric from the bindings. (This turned out to be a family project as there was a lot of prying  of giant staples and my wrist hurts just thinking about all the work)

 Next I folded over the top 3" of the panel and sewed a rod pocket on the top of each. As you can see from the last photo I sewed them all into one long line and then cut them apart as I went. That was so much easier! I also saw a suggestion that if you were to make it from a length of muslin, to make the rod pocket first along the long edge and then cut apart the flags.

Then I cut the fabric into 5" widths. some of the panels were wide enough for me to get two flags per panel! Then I cut the final length at 8". As you can see these are not large flags. They look much larger when photographed by themselves, but my hand shows how small they really are.

Then I decorated with words and other embellishments as I thought were fitting. This is my first one. It will be out in my garden. This is for my family.

These two were created to hang in our flower bed in Karen's garden. They are in memory of Pastor Karen and represent her spirit.  On the second one I did not add anything but words as a sample to our ladies that you don't have to add embellishment to the flag if you choose not to. Since the intent of the flag is to have the prayers and the sentiments dissolve into the wind, I did not finish the edges to allow the fabric to weather naturally as it will. This should add to the beauty of the piece.

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