Last week we were invited to pop-up next to the ethical clothing company Nomads at their new season press launch at Hart’s Bakery in Bristol. While Joe showed off the new Decorator’s Notebook shop collection, I ran a little workshop teaching the lovely bloggers and journalists who attended how to make a colourful tasseled bag charm or keyring embellished with pom poms and beads to take home. They are so quick and easy to make so I thought I’d share the tutorial so you can have a go too!
You will need:
Assorted coloured yarns / embroidery silks
A6 piece of card (I cut mine from a cereal box)
Sharp sewing scissors
Assorted wooden beads with big holes
A lobster clip and split ring like this
1 | Choose the yarn you’d like to use for the main tassel. Cut a small slit in the card, slot the end of the yarn in to hold it in place, then wrap the yarn around the card about 35 – 40 times.
2 | Cut a piece of yarn in the same colour about 50cm long. Pass it underneath the bundle of yarn on your card and secure it in a tight double knot to hold the bundle in place. Keep both ends an equal length and do not trim them!
3 | Slide the bundle off the card and cut through the loops of the yarn using the sewing scissors. Bring all the ends together, leaving the long ends you used to tie the bundle free. Take a contrasting colour of yarn and tie a knot around your bundle about 3cm from the top. Wrap this yarn around the bundle until you have a nice tight band. Knot and trim the ends. You can also trim the tassel at this point, but remember to leave that long piece of yarn at the top nice and long.
4 | Next, make a mini pom pom or two. Take your fork and thread a piece of yarn about 25cm long through the middle spoke. You can tape these two ends to the handle of the fork to keep them out of your way.
5 | Then, wrap some yarn around the fork as shown in the photos below. You want the bundle to be reasonably full but avoid making it too big as you will struggle to tie the pom pom together if it’s too fat – about 15 times works well. Un-stick the yarn from the handle of the fork and use this to tie the bundle together, still keeping it on the fork. Tie it as tightly as you can in a double knot. Slide the bundle off the fork and tie again to make it extra secure.
6 | Carefully, use your sewing scissors to snip through the looped threads of the pom pom. Roll it around in your hands to fluff it up then trim it so that all the ends are the same length. Make another if you like! To create a two-tone pom pom simply wrap yarn in two colours at the same time.
7 | Now assemble your tasseled bag charm or keyring. Take the long ends at the top of your tassel and thread onto the tapestry needle. Push the needle through the beads and pom poms however you choose. When you’re happy, put the needle through the metal split ring and thread the needle back down through your beads, pom poms and tassel. You are aiming to bring your needle right out through the main part of the tassel.
8 | Un-tread the needle but keep hold of the yarn ends. Tie these ends to any other threads in your tassel to secure the whole thing together using a double knot. Now trim all the ends to the same length and sit back to enjoy your handiwork!
HAVE FUN! There are no rules here. Play around as you craft, make your tassels bigger or smaller, make a tassel in several colours, make several and tie in a bunch or use embroidery silks instead of yarn.