If you've perused any bridal magazine in the past few years, I'm sure you noticed the beautiful hand-painted aisle runners such as those made by Aisle Art. They are personal, striking and... expensive!
If you are computer savvy, have a steady hand, want something on a light fabric and want something simple like a monogram that doesn't require dimensional artwork, let me tell you how to make one of your own. It's all tracing!
1. Start with broadcloth fabric or muslin. It's fairly inexpensive and light enough to trace through, yet not be see through on your aisle. I use broadcloth instead of muslin because it's not as gauzy.
2. Cut the fabric to the length you need and hem around all 4 edges. Don't sew? No problem.
Use Heat Hem. "The great no-sew iron-on adhesive makes hemming easy without a needle or thread! It creates clean, secure hems in seconds with no sewing¿ and is completely machine washable!"
It works, it's fabulous and it's EASY! Just get our your iron!
3. Create your design on the computer. Use any desktop publishing program like Publisher, Photoshop, even Word. Create your monogram or wording and print it out.
4. Measure your runner and see what size you'd like the design to appear. Take this printed version of your design to Kinko's and have them blow it up to the size you need on your runner.
5. Lay the fabric flat on a table or preferably the floor. The floor gives you a nice flat surface and lots of working room. Tape the design under your fabric. Be careful of placement and think about where along the length of the runner you want your design. If you will not be having guests walk on the runner prior to the bride's entrance, do you want it at the edge of the aisle where your guests can still admire it as they enter the ceremony area?
6. Take permanent markers... yep.. MARKERS... in the colors you want the design and begin tracing the design onto the fabric. These should not be fabric markers. You need super duper ink markers like sharpies. And make sure to buy a few. You'll want to go over the design a couple times to make it dense.
7. Trim the edge of your runner in ribbon or other embellishments. Not always needed or wanted, but I find it adds a nice touch.
8. Voila! Custom runner!
I've also used this same technique to make tablecloth runners as well as wall hangings to adorn windows of showers. Great to really customize the room and perfect to give the guest of honor to keep and use at her wedding, in the baby's room, etc.