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How To Make A Fabric Backdrop

One of the things I had to have for our gender reveal party was a fabric backdrop behind our antique buffet. There’s lots of backdrop ideas out there. At first, I had planned to make a crepe paper backdrop. But after doing a miniature mock-up I immediately nixed the idea and it popped into my head to make one out of fabric instead. So off to JoAnn Fabric I went to debate over fabric for 30 minutes and scare other customers away by talking to myself about my options. If you ever happen to run into me in public while I’m getting supplies for a project and I’m talking to myself just know it’s part of my creative process.

Anyway, today I’m going to show you how easy it is to make a fabric backdrop like the one I made for our party.

How to make a fabric backdrop


I wanted the backdrop to be around 50 inches tall, and the width of the buffet is 68 inches. After doing the math, I bought a yard and a half of each fabric. In total I brought home a yard and half of eight different fabrics (4 pinks and 4 blues). Since I was buying so much fabric, I was sure to buy fabrics that were on sale and use coupons, including a 25% off the entire purchase coupon. I think altogether I spent around $30-35 on the supplies for my fabric backdrop. And I had leftover fabric.

• fabric (yardage depends on the size of your backdrop)
• parachute cord (JoAnn Fabric– jewelry section)

fabric backdrop supplies

To cut the fabric easier, I folded it in half hamburger style so I would be cutting the longest section. I cut my pieces into 4 inch sections, using my handy cutting mat and rotary cutter.

fabric garland how to

If you don’t own a rotary cutter, get one. Be careful though, they can be dangerous. I cut my finger while using it for this project. But if you can be trusted around sharp objects, I totally recommend it. It makes cutting fabric so much easier and faster.

backdrop how to

Ahhh, look at the nicely cut fabric.

cutting fabric strips for backdrop

pink polka dot fabric

Seriously, I think it took me 10 minutes to cut all of this fabric with my rotary cutter.

(I cut myself while cutting the blue fabric, so that took longer to cut the blue because I had to provide medical treatment for my injured finger.)

fabric strips

Once your fabric is cut, start tying it to your parachute cord. I made a simple knot, like the first step when you tie your shoes. After I tied the knot, I pulled on the fabric a little to fluff it out.

I made a pattern with my 4 different types of fabric in each color (polka dot, solid, gingham, solid). Altogether, I think I used 22 strands of fabric for each side– pink and blue.

how to make fabric garland

Since a backdrop stand wouldn’t make sense, we hung the fabric backdrop with our Ryobi Airstrike stapler, but you can use nails to hang yours. If you make a fabric backdrop as big as mine, tape won’t hold the weight.

hanging a backdrop

I spent a little time adjusting the fabric so it would overlap just right, but that’s because I’m somewhat of a perfectionist.

FYI, I sold my fabric backdrop (along with the tissue paper poms and paper garland) because I had no need for it after our gender reveal party. This is definitely something to consider if you’re making diy photo backdrops for a party and you don’t think you’ll use it again. Someone could buy it to use for their party or a DIY photography backdrop.

I didn’t sell mine for a crazy profit– just enough to cover my materials and time spent making the decorations.

how to make a backdrop

Want a different backdrop option? I’ve also made a paper fan and tissue paper pom pom backdrop!

Gingerbread first birthday party! Perfect for a December birthday!

Think you’ll attempt a fabric backdrop?
Do you talk to yourself often? I hear talking to yourself has cognitive benefits.
Can you be trusted with sharp objects?

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  1. Cute! I made a “ribbon” backdrop for my wedding using scissors, and there were so many frayed threads hanging off my cut fabric — the rotary cutter looks like it made for a much cleaner cut! (But then again I’d probably cut myself on it too.)

    1. Cute idea! I love those ribbon backdrops. Want to know my trick to keep ribbon from fraying? Use a lighter to slightly melt the ends. Don’t go bananas or you’ll start a fire.

  2. When I first saw the backdrop, I was positive you’d used strips of ribbon — because I have pink gingham ribbon that looks just like that. Glad to know how it was really done. Fabric strips are a great idea! (I cut myself on my rotary cutter all the time, haha)

  3. So adorable! I kind of want to make some for my kids’ rooms. And so smart to sell it after . . . not sure that would have occurred to me, but yay for getting a little cash back!

  4. I tried to make a backdrop like this for a party for my sister last year but I used streamers so it didn’t look as cute. This is way better!

    I just got a rotary cutter and cant wait to try it out!

  5. Can you please do a tutorial for the paper poms that lay flat on the table? I LOVE them & have a baby shower coming up that I want to make them for! Thank you!

    1. Hi, Mae! Yeah, I plan on posting a tutorial on those when I get back from vacation. I’m aiming for the week of April 21st. I wish I could post sooner but I didn’t take photos while I was making them (I made most of them at night so lighting was an issue) so I’ll have to re-make some poms and shoot the process.

  6. It’s so cute!! I once cut my bottom lip almost in half with a box cutter (don’t ask)…so no, I can’t be trusted with sharp objects 🙂

  7. I’d cut the strips 2 1/2 inches wide and then use the strips to make a quilt once the back drop is no longer needed.

    1. Great idea, Cheryl! And what a great momento it would be if you were to use the backdrop fabric from a special occasion like a shower or wedding. This makes me wish I knew how to quilt.

  8. That backdrop is cute! I too talk to myself when shopping for any home item! I could be at Target, Michaels, HomeGoods etc. & then I catch myself & try to keep it in my head. And no I can’t really be trusted with sharp objects, but that doesn’t mean I stay away from my box cutter or x-acto knife 🙂

  9. I love this and will certainly use this idea in the future! We hold larger birthday parties at our community clubhouse, and we always need great ideas for covering large expanses of white walls. For hanging the backdrops, try adhesive hooks that can be removed easily instead of marring the wall. For my daughter’ shower I had a clothesline of antique baby clothes, and used 3M hooks very successfully! I covered the exposed hooks with big bows of tulle, since is was using it as part of the antique baby girl theme.

  10. Thanks for the tips! I just made a one as a backdrop for a photo booth for my wedding and it turned out great! The suggestion to buy the fabric cutter set saved my life. Thank you for writing

  11. What kind of fabric are you using? Cotton? Flannel? What would you recommend?

  12. I have 2 gender reveals coming up! One daughter due July 2017 the other daughter due August 2017…. I absolutely LOVE this idea!!

  13. Did you get the fabric you used at Joann’s as well?

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