Joyful Jewish

Simple Flags for Simchat Torah

Posted on: 25 September, 2010

My daughter was two last Simchat Torah, and it was the most fun she had ever had in synagogue.  She loved that her daddy danced around the synagogue while carrying a torah  and that I was dancing around carrying her!  She talked about it for months afterwards.

This year I decided to make her a flag to wave.   I wanted something quick and easy to make but that would still look good and hopefully last for a while (ie longer than a paper flag).

– wooden dowelling.  I found 8mm diameter, 120cm long pine dowelling at Bunnings for $2 each.
– fabric.    I went to Spotlight and told a saleswoman I needed fabric which would look good from either side, and she recommended a plain cotton fabric which would be easy to sew and quite cheap too.  If you are a sewer and know your fabrics, you could probably use something fancier or with better draping qualities, but for a small flag the cotton is fine.
– Rickrack or other ribbon  (optional decoration).

Equipment I used
Sewing machine, thread, fabric scissors, pins, measuring tape, chalk or similar to mark fabric when measured, sticky tape. If you didn’t want to sew flags, you could probably use glue or staples.  Small saw to cut the dowelling.

How to make your Simchat Torah flags

1. Cut dowelling into suitable lengths.  Mine are 40cm long.

2. Cut rectangles from your fabric.  I cut mine approximately 25cm x 36cm.  (The longer measurement was not done via tape measure but by folding the width of the original piece of fabric into three equal pieces and cutting.  As a bonus, two pieces will have a selvage edge.)  With these measurements, you can cut 12 flags from one metre of fabric.

3. Fold over one short side about 0.5cm, then over again about 2cm and stitch so that you create a tunnel into which you will insert your dowelling.   I contemplated hemming the other edges of my flag, but decided it was not worthwhile given it is not designed to last forever or go through the wash.

4. Cut two ribbons or pieces of rick-rack approximately the length of the flag.

5. Sew across the top of the hem-tunnel where you are inserting your dowel (so that it forms a pocket) BUT before you stitch, place the pieces of ribbon/rick-rack either side of the place you are going to stitch.  Then you can attach the ribbon/rick-rack and sew up the pocket at the same time.

6.  Insert dowel and ta-dah! One easy-to-wave Simchat Torah flag.

More ideas

To prevent the cloth from coming off the dowel, I used sticky tape, but you could glue or staple it if you preferred.

I chose plain yellow, green and blue fabric to reflect the story in “Bubbe Isabella’s Sukkot Cake”

You could embellish this flag in sooooo many ways, but I’m keeping it simple this year because I have no spare time. Next year I’m planning to make some more, maybe just in white fabric, and letting the kids at Shabbat Tot decorate their own with fabric paint etc.

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Fun crafts and activities for Jewish families with young children

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