Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Ultimate Tassel Tutorial...

This post was first "Guest-posted" at Edie's 12 Days of Handmade Christmas Party. I am posting it here for reference, but if you missed the party you should still go over and visit. There are some seriously fun ideas for presents over there.

Hey friends! My name is Mandi and I have a little blog called Mandi Shandi's. The fabulous Edie was one of my very first "Blog "friends, and we all know how super cool she is (no editing Edie!), so when she asked me to take part in this fab 12 Days of Christmas Party she is having, I was thrilled! I will warn you that I am not typically the best tutorial writer.I am super-busy mom of 2 young boys,
(Me above, and those rowdy boys below.)
and I get distracted easily, but I'm taking extra care this time to make sure I get enough pictures and give detailed instructions. If I manage to leave out any details that you need, feel free to hop over to my blog or e-mail me. Who am I kidding? I hope you come over and visit my blog regardless! I love making new friends!

Let's get this party started! This is what I am calling the Ultimate Tassel Tutorial because I am gonna give you so much info. that it may qualify as overload, but you will be able to start making decorative tassels immediately.

I recommend you start off by gathering your supplies. You will probably need to shop for a couple things, but most crafters already have a lot of this stuff on hand.
Wood Candle Cups- Available at all craft stores in the unfinished wood section.
Small Screw Eyes- Available at Target, Wal-Mart, or any hardware store.
Ribbons, Trims, Fringe, or Yarn- I am a Hobby Lobby girl. I think their prices are just hard to beat, so most of my embellishments come from there when it is on sale. You can also find nice fringe at Hancock Fabrics.
Hot Glue Gun and LOTS of Gluesticks.
Maximum Adhesive Glue- I use E6000 (not pictured b/c I ran out, but you can get it at Wal-Mart or craft stores.) **NOTE**Since publishing this post I have found out that this glue is banned in CA because it can be harmful. I will be switching to another glue, but use your own judgement.
Topper or Small Figurine- I pick up small figurines everywhere, even the Dollar Tree at times. I also like to use Christmas ornaments because they already have the eyehook in the top.
Drill- Ideally you would use a jewelry drill, but I use a regular drill and am very careful.

Since this is a Christmas party, I am gonna make a Christmas tassel using an ornament. I can skip the drilling part. Normally though, you would start off by drilling a small hole in the top of your figurine. I always put a little glue in the hole to make sure the eye hook stays in. Screw in your eye hook.

Next glue your topper to the candle cup. I use E6000 for this and usually let it dry for atleast an hour. Run a pretty ribbon through the eye hook and tie it in nice bow or knot. Make sure it is long enough to hang properly after tied. I cut my ribbon between 10 and 12 inches.

Now the fun starts. I line up my trims and get busy picking colors. I have found that my tassels look most balanced if I use the widest trims on the bottom and work to the smallest ones on the top. I line my trims up in this order.
Once I have picked the bottom layer, I take it and roll it up to see how much it will take to fill the inside of the candle cup. When I get a good idea, I cut the fringe at that length, add a strip of hot glue and roll it back up.

Then I thoroughly glue the interior of the candle cup, and stuff my rolled up fringe inside. It should be a tight fit.

I cut my ribbon in equal lengths and get it ready to glue. It typically takes between 4 and 7 strips of ribbon, depending on the diameter of the ribbon and the candle cup or dowel rod you are tasseling. The hot glue dries fast, so it is best to already have your ribbon cut. Make sure if you are making loops and your ribbon is printed, that you glue the printed side down so when you loop it the print will show.
Keep adding layers until you reach the top of your candle cup. At this point you will need something nice and fluffy to round out the tassel. I say fluffy, because that type of fringe is the most forgiving if you don't get it just perfect. It also covers the bond between the topper and the candle cup so you want something thick. You could also add bows or ribbon. The sky is the limit.
Last but not least, carry your new tassel into the bathroom and blow it with the hairdryer. This eliminates all those pesky hot glue strings. Now its time to find a home for your new beauty. Hang them on doorknobs, lamps, furniture, or even ceiling fans.
And just in case you need a little more inspiration to get you tasseling, here are a few favorites that I have made recently.

There you have it. The Ultimate Tassel Tutorial. I hope I was clear enough on my instructions, and if you make some tassels stop by my blog and let me know. I'd love to visit you and see them all!


Laura said...

Great tutorial! I'll definitely be trying this!!! Yours are so cute!!!

Kendra @ Domestic Princess in Training said...

I made 3 tassels yesterday! I couldn’t stop myself!!

Mandi @ Finding Home said...

Thanks for the tutorial! I've been really wanting to try my hand at tassels. They are such darling thigns. I feel so happy that I own one that you made. Great tutorial!

Momma Snail said...

You are the tassel queen! I love, love, love these! Thanks for the inspiration!

************** said...

Great tutorial! I love those tassels. But I have never tried to make one.
Just wanted to thank you for coming by my blog and leaving a comment. It's nice to meet you. I am following you and your crafty blog now!

Heather L. said...

Mandi, this is a great tutorial! I hope you got my email - I ADORE my tassel and pillow - you are the best!!! Thanks again SO much!!!

baby sis said...

Wow!!! I'm so excited. I'm in charge of bringing a craft for the girls to our family Thanksgiving dinner and this is going to be it!!! I can't wait to try it!!!

jsangel said...

Thank you for the tutoril. It was so easy to understand. I can't wait to get started on my own tassels!

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