race for the cure and mini flag tutorial


last weekend was the komen race for the cure in portland.  we lost my mom’s sister, elaine, to breast cancer in 1995 and still miss her.  she was a marathon runner, lived in an amazing house in california wine country, and was the executive director for the napa valley vintner’s association.  yep, pretty much the coolest gal ever.  i remember when we visited her in napa, she made us cocoa with steamed milk with her espresso machine (this was in the early ’90s when the espresso craze hadn’t taken off yet).  we started running the race for the cure while she was still battling, and have run/walked it on and off  since.

this year, the race fell on my sister andrea’s birthday, and she wanted to walk it with the kids.  she also asked her friend, kim, to join us.  we ended up walking with two 3 year olds, a 2.5 year old, a 9 month old, and a 5 month old, plus kim is pregnant (and left another daughter at home with daddy)!  phew!  the 5K walk took us over 2 hours, we took so many breaks we almost got beaten by the “end of the race” police cars, and it rained during the final stretch, but it was worth it.  it’s just so powerful and important being with all of those people walking for the same cause – a cure for breast cancer.  there were tears of course, but it’s also a happy, celebratory event.  we walked in memory of those lost, in support of those currently fighting, and in celebration of those who have conquered!

i wanted to make some decorations for the event – people like to dress in costume and get into it, especially for the 5K walk.  i told Em it was a “pink parade” and let her dress in almost every pink item in her closet (her dream come true)!  O got in the spirit with pink legwarmers, but kept it boyish by rocking his pirate shoes.  😉  he also nursed in the ergo during the walk – can you think of anything more appropriate than a baby breastfeeding during a breast cancer walk?

i made komen logo badges for our ergo carriers…

quick pink felt buntings for the strollers…

and little pink and gold flags for the girls to wave!

the mini flags were inspired by these amazing flag sculptures by oh happy day!, but mine are preschooler-sized.  i made them with scraps of pink ombré fabric leftover from Em’s ballet bag and superhero cape, backed with a metallic gold fabric i recently picked up at the halloween display at joann.  here’s how:

STEP 1: gather your materials – takeout food chopsticks (preferably unused!), and 1/8 yard each of a front and back fabric (for four flags).  cut a 4″ x 7″ rectangle from the front fabric, then make a mark 2″ in from the right edge, centered.  cut out at an angle to each edge to create the shape below.

STEP 2: pin the flag onto the backing fabric, then sew around the edge with a zigzag stitch, leaving about 3/4″ at the bottom left edge so you can insert your chopstick later (you can see the little purple mark if you zoom into this photo).

STEP 3: trim away the extra backing fabric, close to the stitches (don’t cut the stitches!)

STEP 4: sew a channel for your chopstick with a straight stitch, about 1/2″ from left edge of the flag.  you can eyeball this based on your chopstick – just don’t make it too big, or your flag will fly off with vigorous waving!

STEP 5: insert chopstick with the “pointed” end first, wave it around!

voilà!  mini flags for the cure!  🙂


6 thoughts on “race for the cure and mini flag tutorial

  1. liZ evans says:

    LOVE events like these. I love to run and my favorite races are those that are for a cause. How fun to bring your kids. It looks like it was a great morning.

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