Vintage pennants decorate the walls of this playroom in a turn-of-the-century farmhouse. Easy project to display vintage pennants from pegs.

I knew when I saw these vintage pennants for the first time.

I just knew.

When I first saw the box with the vintage pennants tucked inside….I knew they were an ABC after-school-special just waiting to happen.

Remember those after-school-specials?

Remember the one where the girl was not that cute and she was wearing glasses and frumpy clothes with not cute hair and she was super shy.  And she didn’t really have any friends.  And for some reason she was always drawing in a notebook.


Super awkward.

And then one day she was helping the star football player with his homework and he gazed into her eyes….well actually he really gazed into her glasses, but it didn’t matter because he saw beyond those glasses…..

                                …..and truly saw her for the first time.

He saw her for the true beauty that she was.


Weren’t those ABC after-school-specials just the best.?

These vintage pennants are just like that.

Just like an after-school-special.

When I first saw them they were frumpy and old and folded and one step away from wearing glasses and writing in a notebook.

But I knew that they could be so much more.

I knew they would make the perfect valance for the playroom.

So vintage.

So one-of-a-kind.

So ready for a make-over.

I sewed a grey ribbon to the corners of each pennant.

And tied them to white wooden pegboards

And then because, in addition to watching every after-school-special ever made, I also have been known to study the Pottery Barn catalog cover to cover.  And a while back, Pottery Barn featured vintage pennants hung from pegs.

So, of course, I tied some more pennants to white pegboards that I hung on the wall.

The white peg boards came from Lowe’s.

The grey ribbon came from Wal-mart.

The vintage banners came from an old garage.

All characters in one of my favorite after-school-specials ever.

vintage pennants in hallway

And there’s no inspiration like a good after-school-special.

Especially the ending.

Like the ending where the quarterback was supposed to meet his stuck-up snobby overly-tanned girlfriend at the dance.  But all of a sudden on the dance floor, the dancers parted and there was the previously shy, notebook-writing, frumpy-haired girl.

Looking like the next supermodel.


Just like my vintage pennants 🙂

PS If you want another vintage pennant idea—why not make a pillow like this one.

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for Beverly Beverly

    Karianne, I love it. I have to admit that I laughed when I saw this post pop up. Do you think a Kentucky girl would like to hang my Duke pennant? We won't be needing it anymore this season. I would just have to have it ready for next season. Did I make you laugh?

  2. Image for Kelly @ View Along the Way Kelly @ View Along the Way

    Ahhh nothing like a classic love story! I have to tell you how much I appreciate the arrows in your photo too. But they don't upstage the fabulous pennant idea. So vintagey and festive! And next to your ribbon display, it makes me think all your family ever does is win.

  3. Image for debbiewestbrooks debbiewestbrooks

    Your arrows look great! I love your pennants and I study PB and write in notebooks =) Hope you're having a great weekend! debbie

  4. Image for shirley@housepitalitydesigns shirley@housepitalitydesigns

    Whenever I see a vintage pennant I think of the days of raccoon coats and funny hats...oops, I hope I did not burn that image in your brain...just switch to the super model image, a whole lot better! ..and BTW...I was always a Florida Gator I am a Tar Heel fan since I am a "local now".....So wanna wager a little bet?...Say a yogurt at Haven?...That is if the teams make it to the finals.. Another great post KariAnne!! never disappoint!

  5. Image for bunny bunny

    Very smart and clever....My daughter rides horses and her ribbons adorn our dining room. Items like this add a personal touch to a room...right? have a wonderful weekend, bunny

  6. Image for

    Such a cool idea, and another great post, Karianne! They look adorable. I love that they were rescued from the old garage, and now are the star of your playroom. Just like the formerly frumpy - turned super model - girl! I miss those after school specials! Are we living in some kind of parallel universe? This week I found out that we have a major leak in our master bath, and it may result in ripping out part of the kitchen below, as well as the granite shower. Same staining on the ceiling, but much bigger problem inside one of the walls. It's crazy! Oh, and I have been making a pennant shaped banner for a valance in the little guy's room, from old pilot charts of my hubby's. Have not finished it yet, but planned to post it when I do. I will be sure to include a link to your cool pennant valance in my post since yours look so great! Strange coincidence?! Hope you have a nice weekend! xo-Lisa

  7. Image for cassie cassie

    yeah, i hated those stories- they gave my dorky self hope.... the football players never saw the "real beauty in me". oh well. :) the pennants are cool.

  8. Image for Barbara F. Barbara F.

    The playroom is so welcoming and charming; the pennants add to the fun feel of the room. Delightful post Karianne!

  9. Image for Laura Laura

    First, I have to say I love the Duke comment. We all know that no self respecting Kentucky girl could ever hang a Duke pennant We could possibly get tarred and feathered. :) I love what you did with the pennants. I just sold a stack to someone and I hope she did something equally as cute with hers. Laura

  10. Image for Cindy Cindy

    Those are some gorgeous pennants that you have featured today, truly stars now that they hang from white pegs. I love your sense of humor, are you sure you're not British? You remind me of their dry, but very funny way of writing. Hugs, Cindy

  11. Image for Kelly Kelly

    Love that idea of using pennants as part of your window treatment. I love the graphics and color it brings to the room and not to mention that wonderful sports collegiate feeling. This room is so great.

  12. Image for Gina Gina

    Haha, I had forgotten about after school specials. They were the best. :) I love the pennants. Great way to use them! That is the cutest playroom. :)

  13. Image for Nancy Nancy

    Very nice! I have a box full that are VERY old. Not sure if I will decorate with them in this rental, but I could be offering them for sale soon. We'll see...they belong to someone in this house ;-). Love the room and they complete the theme so well.

  14. Image for Betsy(@coastal-colors) Betsy(@coastal-colors)

    Do I need to send you a Georgia Tech pennant? I know this would complete the room! LOL! I loved these the first time I saw them and didn't think they could get better, but they did! You're amazing! I love these old pennants and what a great use you have found for them! I always leave your blog inspired!

  15. Image for Vanessa Vanessa

    Hi, Karianne I just love this idea using pennant as valances. How awesome and different. I love all the different colors and it looks lovely in the play room. Thank you so much for stopping by Have a great weekend. Vanessa

  16. Image for Linda Adams Linda Adams

    Hi Karianne, Great use of the pennants and I notice that they do not block out that warm wonderful sun beating down in the kitty cat's napping area. Joyous Wishes, Linda

  17. Image for debbiedoos debbiedoos

    Looking forward to having you. I now added your blog to my new roll as well. my new url is

  18. Image for dee dee dee dee

    Ahhhh after school specials..... I remember the days! Although I must state that your creativity far outweighs the hashed and rehashed story lines of the specials! Both in your writing and decorating ... You shine like a new penny! dee dee

  19. Image for Kara Kara

    the colors are fabulous. and i love the peg boards. way to apply all that you've learned from the pottery barn catalog. your time studying paid off.

Comments are closed.