Monday, September 28, 2015

Birthday Project #1: DIY Pink and Gold Happy Birthday and "ONE" Banner

This was the first project that I used my Cricut for, even though I received it as a Christmas present about 1.5 years ago.  It’s been a great help in creating customized decorations for Brooklyn’s party!  I can make things much cheaper than buying of Etsy…and I can make it personal than buying generic decorations at a party store.

The first thing I wanted to make were some banners: 1) A “ONE” banner that would be strung across her high chair, basically for the cake smash pictures, and 2) A “Happy Birthday” banner that would be strung as decoration on the wall.

I bought the cardstock all 50% off at Hobby Lobby during their scrapbooking sale in August!  The glitter cardstock is expensive, so definitely look for a sale!

I will also post a separate blog about the 12 month picture banner I created as well. Stay tuned!
I ran in to a bit of trouble with my Cricut machine when I was cutting the thinner paper. I still haven’t solved my problem, but I was able to get enough usable letters after many, many attempts. I have almost come to the conclusion that my blade may be a little dull after cutting the thick glitter cardstock.

Total Cost:
Approximately $15, + mod podge and ribbon on hand; in addition to the $20 for the font cartridge. If you already have a cartridge or you don’t mind the basic font, then it is really just $15.

Light pink textured Cardstock
White textured Cardstock
Gold Glitter Cardstock
Cricut Machine
Cartridge with your preferred font/shapes
Mod Podge or Glue
Light pink ribbon

  1. First you need to decide what shape you want your banner to be in. I chose a shape that was in the basic cartridge to save money. Also I actually really liked the shape – so it worked out!  TIP: I think perhaps my blade dulled when cutting the glitter cardstock, so I suggest saving the glitter cardstock cutting for the end, just in case!
  2. Once you have your shaped picked out, decide what size you want. I did 5” x 6”.  Three of this size will fit perfectly across her highchair.
  3. Fit as many of that size shape on one page.  I was able to only get 2 of the large size on my paper no matter how I tried to juxtapose them.
  4. Place the color paper that you want the large size cut in to on the mat. I used the glitter cardstock. Then load the mat in the machine.
  5. Click cut, and adjust any settings to cut on the glitter cardstock. I used a depth of 5, pressure of 4 and cut speed of 5. This is a simple shape, so the speed worked just fine.
  6. Once cutting is done, remove the mat and punch out your shape.  You now have your base! Repeat cutting steps to obtain the amount of banners you need to spell out your saying.
  7. Decide what size you want your next layer to be. I did 4” x 5” so there is about a ½” on all sides, and I think it turned out great.
  8. Fit as many of that size shape on one page.  I was able to get 4 of the smaller size to fit on a page with some of them turned in odd angles – but who cares because you’re just punching them out.
  9. Place the next color paper on the mat.  I used the light pink cardstock.  Load the mat in the machine.
  10. Click cut and adjust any setting to cut on the pink textured cardstock. I used a depth of 4, pressure of 4, and speed of 5.
  11. Once cutting is done, remove the mat and punch out your shapes.
  12. Using the cartridge which has the font you would like to use, spell out your saying. In my case I spelled “happy birthday” and “one”.
  13. Adjust the size of your letters so they fit well in your smaller (4” x 5”) shape.  TIP: I created the letter in a different layer from my shape so I could layer it on top of the shape to see what it would look like. Once I got a good size, I deleted the shape. You could also just choose not to cut that layer.
  14. Fit as many letters of that size on one page.  I was able to fit quite a few letters on the page, but I ended up using a lot of paper because this was where I encountered my issue.
  15. Place your next color of paper on the mat. I used white textured cardstock. Load the mat in the machine.
  16. Click cut and adjust any settings.  I had to play with my settings in order to get good cuts on some of the letters with the tight angles (such as y, b, d). In theory you should be able to use the same settings as step 10 for the textured cardstock, but slow the speed down a bit because these are more intricate.  My cricut kept tearing at the angles in some of my letters. I just cleaned them up a bit with scissors and most of them ended up looking okay.
  17. Once cutting is done, remove the mat and punch out your letters.  TIP: I think perhaps my blade dulled when cutting the glitter cardstock, so I suggest saving the glitter cardstock cutting for the end, just in case!
  18. Now that you have everything cut, it’s time to put it all together!  Grab your mod podge or glue!
  19. I used a paintbrush to brush a thick layer of mod podge on the back of my light pink cardstock shape. 
  20. I eyeballed the center of the glitter cardstock and pressed down.  It is hard to get the glue to stick to the glitter, so I had to press down firmly with my palm for several seconds, and then I placed something heavy on top of it to help hold it down while the glue dried. CAUTION: Some of the glue or mod podge may squeeze out the side, so make sure you’ve dabbed it all off before placing something on top of it so it doesn’t stick to your pretty banner!
  21. Repeat step 20 for all banners.
  22. Next, brush some mod podge or glue on the backs of your letters and eyeball the center. Press down firmly. I found it was much easier to glue textured cardstock to textured cardstock, so just a few second hold with my palm was all it needed.
  23. The next step is to hole punch the top of your banner so you can hang it.  I punched two holes in the top of each banner.
  24. Pick a ribbon to string through the banner, leaving room to hang it on the sides.  I left about 10 -12 inches (I just eyeballed how much I thought I’d need) on each side to tie a bow to hang the banner.
  25. Voila! Your project is complete!  NOTE: I taped the banners to the highchair and to the window valence. They held pretty well, you just need to make sure the tape has a good grip on the ribbon.


Elaine Miller said...

This is a wonderful idea. It is so cheap and easy to do yourself and would even be great for a photo shoot along with birthday party decorations. I wish i would have thought of this when my daughter was turning one. She is now 2, but i could probably use the same concept for her third birthday.

Elaine Miller @ Hawk Eye Print

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