Have you been searching for gorgeous yarn crafts that you can make all year round? Look no further, today I’m sharing one of the most incredible yarn crafts around. By fabulous crafter and instagrammer Elizabeth of @Fancy Flamingo Design. You can find some of her insanely beautiful projects available for sale in her Etsy store!
On to the post!
Pom-tassels are a creative twist on the currently popular yarn crafts; tassels and pompoms, easy to make, with many different uses! Fair warning, though, making them is addictive, so get hydrated, and set up your Netflix!
YARN CRAFTS 101:
TO MAKE A POM-TASSEL YOU WILL NEED:
- Yarn, in the colours and textures of your choice – as few as one or as many as you like
- Sharp pointy scissors (think, embroidery scissors)
- Non-corrugated cardboard
- Pompom maker(s), such as the Clover Pompom Maker (optional, but highly recommended)
- Plastic yarn (sometimes called tapestry) needle
The Best Yarn For Making Awesome Yarn Crafts
Before we get started, let’s chat about yarn, the choices are endless, and, though you really can’t go wrong, some options are better than others for this project.
It is perfectly fine to mix yarn weights (DK, Aran, Chunky, etc.) here, and it will enhance the boho vibe if that is what you want to achieve.
Since we are not making something that is going next to skin, and it won’t be washed, there is no need to spend a lot of money on high-quality yarns.
However, if you are lucky enough to have an indie yarn shop near you, you will see that there are some beautiful hand-dyed yarns out there that make the prettiest poms and tassels.
100% wool yarn makes fantastic pompoms but is not great for tassels because it doesn’t hang well.
If you have wool that you love, try mixing some non-wools into your tassel. 100% cotton is excellent for tassels, but will not make a good pompom on its own.
Acrylics are suitable for poms and tassels, and it is here that you will find a vast range of colours and variegation.
Novelty yarns (chenilles, bouclés, etc.) are best left to your tassels, not your poms.
Most important, though, is this: you will see that in the centre of yarn skeins and balls is very curly yarn, this is fine to use in your tassel, but DO NOT use it in your pom.
It is a nightmare to try and trim, and you will never have a cute round pom. Trust me on this!
HOW TO MAKE A POM-TASSEL:
If you are not using a pompom maker, please use the instructions here to make your pompom… and then skip to step 5.
If you are using a pompom maker, select the size maker that you want to use, keeping in mind that your trimmed, finished pom is usually slightly larger than the maker itself.
I used the medium Clover pompom maker.
With your pompom maker, begin wrapping yarn around 2 of the extended arms, if you are mixing yarns in the pom, you will wrap a bit, cut the yarn, then start wrapping with a different yarn, and so on.
If you want a freckled or sprinkled pom, you will wrap with several different yarns at the same time (this is also quite a time saver!).
Wrap each set of two arms until the little semicircle at the bottom is almost full (refer to the directions that come with the maker).
Cut a piece of yarn (don’t use chunky yarn, but do use a strong yarn) about 18″ long.
Then, cut the yarn all the way around the perimeter of the maker, using the groove in between the arms – try not to tug on the yarn as you do this – make small steady snips. Be sure to keep the arms of the maker closed.
Take the 18″ piece of yarn and wrap it around the maker between the two sides. Make a single knot and, gently but firmly, pull tight – now double knot it.
Turn the maker/template over and make the same knot on the other side.
Gently lift the arms, one at a time, to release them from the pom. Using your fingers, gently fluff the pompom (we are gentle today!). Don’t panic if your pom looks more like an oval than a circle.
Trim your baby! Somedays, I find that it may take 5 minutes to make a pom, and 25 to trim it.
You can do this by sight – we are not here to make perfect circles, we are making boho, artsy, kinds of shaggy poms.
Leave your long yarn tail on your pom, and set it aside.
Decide how long you want your tassel to be… I am going to make a 7″ tassel, but you do you!
If I were making a 9″ or a 6″ tassel, I would use a clipboard for this, but, for 7″, I will use my non-corrugated cardboard to cut a 7″ by 7″ square.
Do the same for whatever size you choose.
Cut a piece of yarn (again, not chunky, but strong) that is twice the length of your tassel.
Then, cut a piece of yarn that is four times the length of your tassel. Set both aside.
Start wrapping your yarns around your cardboard.
You will need to hold the yarn end in place until you wrap over it.
Wrap firmly, but do not wrap super tight. Switch yarns as desired. Use the freckle/sprinkle technique if you like.
How much yarn you wrap is up to you… if I am using a lightweight yarn, I will usually wrap 80 times around.
With a medium weight yarn, I will usually wrap 50 times around, and with a chunky, I will often wrap 30 times around.
But, for this project, I just eyeballed it.
When you are done wrapping the yarn, pick up the shorter piece of cut yarn, and slide it under the wrapped yarn.
Pull the cut yarn to the edge of the cardboard, pull it tight, and tie in a square knot.
Carefully (and without tugging on the yarn) snip the yarn on the opposite edge of the cardboard from where you tied the knot.
Holding onto the knotted piece of yarn, make sure that the two halves of the cut yarn tassel are about the same length – if it looks very uneven, gently pull the yarn from one side of the knot to the other.
Take the remaining piece of cut yarn, and begin wrapping it tightly around the top of the tassel (about one inch below the knot).
Knot this yarn so that the ends of the yarn are at least as long as the tassel.
You can add more colours here by wrapping different yarns above or below.
I like to leave the tails long, but you can also trim them shorter and then use the yarn needle to slide the tails underneath the wrap.
If you like a more deconstructed look, you can also skip wrapping yarn around the tassel, and move to the next step.
Trim the bottom edges of the tassel… you can just eyeball this by holding the tassel up and trimming any long pieces of yarn. No surgical precision needed here!
Thread both ends of the yarn that is knotted at the top of the tassel onto the yarn needle.
Push the needle through the centre of the pompom – if you feel resistance in the centre of the pompom, it means that you are trying to push through the yarn that tied the centre of the pompom.
Simply take the needle out and rotate the pompom a quarter turn and try again!
Once the pompom is attached to the tassel, trim the pompom long tails (not the ones that you just threaded through the pompom).
At this point, you can knot the yarn tails that you threaded through the pompom, and make a hanging loop for your pom-tassel, if you like.
Or, if you are making many pom-tassels, you can tie the long tails to a piece of cotton twine to create a garland.
Individual pom-tassels look great hung on a doorknob, a bedpost, or the end of a curtain rod.
They also make fun gift toppers.
The garlands are perfect for a party decoration that can be used over and over.
Use your creativity… make a long tassel with three small poms on top, or a short tassel with one big pom on top… use school colours or go monochromatic… I can’t wait to see what you make!