How to Sew a Tapestry Wall Hanging
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Have you ever admired wall tapestries? Then maybe, you’ve wondered how to sew a tapestry wall hanging yourself. If so, you’re in the right place. Wall hangings are extremely popular right now. They never go out of style either. Wall tapestries are a timeless homemade decor item for your home and thoughtful heirloom gift for lucky recipients.
These trendy fabric or yarn creations can add a bold splash of color to empty walls. Plus, they are an affordable and easy craft to make yourself! They are so easy, in fact, that a DIY wall tapestry makes an excellent first project if you haven’t ever sewn before.
Tapestries are also a very versatile form of home decor. This is a craft that is super simple to customize, so you can create something that is totally unique that expresses who you are.
For this tutorial, we will show you how to hem a piece of fabric to use as your canvas, add embellishments, and hang it on your wall using a dowel. Read on to learn how to sew a tapestry wall hanging and make a one-of-a-kind piece of art.
How to Sew a Tapestry Wall Hanging
1. Start with your vision
Before you go fabric shopping, take a look at your space and form your vision.
Here are some questions you could ask yourself while you are brainstorming:
- What are your goals with the space?
- Are you looking for something colorful?
- Do you want something versatile that can match multiple styles of decor?
- Do you want to fill a large empty place in your wall?
- Will your DIY wall tapestry be a small addition to a gallery wall?
- What styles of art or home decor do you prefer--modern? Abstract? Traditional? Geometric?
Whatever your tastes—or answers to these questions—there is probably a way to sew a tapestry wall hanging to suit your needs and complement your style. If you’re stuck, you can always search social media sites like Pinterest or Instagram for inspiration. Do you have something in mind yet? Great! Let’s move to step 2.
2. Choose your fabric
To make your own DIY wall tapestry, you will need just a few basic materials. Of course, the first and most important thing you will need is fabric! What type of fabric you use depends on your design plan.
Many beautiful wall tapestries are simply a panel of fabric that has been hemmed and hung on the wall. For this style, select either a fabric panel, or a fabric with a large, bold pattern that you think looks great all on its own.
Panel - Teal from Ruby Star Society’s Purl collection is a great example of a panel that would look fantastic as a tapestry. This graphic panel features three extra large images: a pair of hands twirling some yarn, a llama, and a tea kettle. Imagine the yarn panel hung in your craft room, or the llama panel as a decoration for your child’s bedroom! Panels like these make creating a striking tapestry out of fabric a piece of cake.
If you like an abstract look, A Ghastlie Screen from Alexander Henry Fabrics has a pattern that is big and vibrant enough to look incredible as a wall tapestry, without any extra embellishments. If you are using fabric but not a panel, look for very large prints like this one.
If you are planning on embellishing your tapestry, you will likely want a solid color as your canvas. Andover Fabrics’ Century Solids collection is perfect for this. They have a fabric in almost any color you can think of!
3. Gather other materials
To hang your DIY wall tapestry, you will need a wooden dowel, natural found object like a stick or driftwood, or metal rod, and some string. Make sure to select the right length of dowel (a few inches longer than your fabric on each side). To cut your fabric, you will need a good pair of fabric shears. To hem your fabric, you will need matching thread and a hand-sewing needle or a sewing machine.
Anything else you need is up to you. Many crafters like to add a simple tassel at the bottom of their tapestry. You could glue on abstract shapes or letters made out of felt, or add rows of pom poms, tassels, and beads. This is where you can really get creative! Maybe you’ll even start a new wall tapestry trend.
4. Hem the fabric
First, cut your fabric down to your desired size. Leave an extra inch on each side for the hem, and an extra inch on the top for the dowel pocket (or more if you have a really wide dowel!). So, if you want the finished tapestry to be 15 inches wide and 20 inches long, cut your fabric to 17 inches wide (an extra inch on each side) and 23 inches long (an extra inch on top and bottom for the hem, plus an extra inch on top).
Hem all four edges of your fabric with a ½ inch double hem. So, fold down the edge of your fabric ½ an inch, iron it down, fold it another ½ inch in the same direction, and iron it again. Then, simply sew a straight line along the folded edge.
To create the dowel pocket, fold the top edge of the fabric back, far enough so there is room for the dowel to fit inside (probably about an inch). Sew a straight line across the fabric to create a pocket for the dowel to slide into.
Remember, this is an optional step of how to make a tapestry out of fabric! If you want just a simple panel tapestry, move on to the next step. Otherwise, it’s time to add your embellishments.
If you are adding a tassel along the bottom of your tapestry, use some straight pins to secure it in place, then either sew it or glue it onto the back of the tapestry so that the tassels dangle down in the front. You could also sew some trim around the edges to frame the fabric. If you are adding other embellishments like felt shapes or pom poms, use some hot glue to attach them to your canvas. Remember to arrange these elements on the tapestry before you start gluing! You may even want to mark with pencil where you want each element to go.
6. Hang the tapestry
You’re almost done! Now, take your dowel and slide it through the pocket that you made in step 4. Then, measure out some string, leaving some extra space on each side so you can tie it on. Tie each end of the string onto each end of the dowel. Voila! Your DIY wall tapestry is done, and you can hang it on your wall the same way that you would a picture frame.
Congratulations! You have learned how to sew a tapestry wall hanging, and now you have a beautiful one-of-a-kind piece of art to display in your home. We hope you had fun making this simple craft. We’re always adding more tutorials like these to the Little Fabric Shop blog, so we hope we will see you again soon!