How to make tassel keyrings with fabric scraps

It feels like there a big change happening right now regarding the planet, climate change (which is now being called “climate crisis”) and how we consume on a daily basis. This is a big reason why I’ve been making changes around here too, in the materials that I use in our workshops and what’s inside our kits. I’ve swapped out acrylic yarn in favour of merino wool (which also comes with its problems… but I’ll save that for another post), acrylic felt for wool felt and single-use plastic packaging to a reusable option that can be recycled once you’re finished with it.

With this in mind, you can expect more diy’s and project ideas that include recycled materials, ways to reduce waste or re-use scraps and just general information about crafting more consciously as we go forward. I hope this is something you’re also totally on board with!

tassel keyring

So without further ado, here’s an idea on how to use up your fabric scraps to make these funky cool fabric tassel keyrings!

What you’ll need:

  • Fabric scraps (I used jersey fabric but cotton and any other fabric works well too)

  • Ruler

  • Rotary cutter and/or scissors

  • Darning needle

  • Keyring

Love these prints? They are the scraps from  Cub & Pudding ’s very first collection. Sarah, the designer of the brand, asked the factory who made her line of kids clothes to send her all the scraps, so that she could give them a second life instead of ending up in the bin. We made a ton of tassel keyrings out of these!

Love these prints? They are the scraps from Cub & Pudding’s very first collection. Sarah, the designer of the brand, asked the factory who made her line of kids clothes to send her all the scraps, so that she could give them a second life instead of ending up in the bin. We made a ton of tassel keyrings out of these!

I originally found this tutorial on Pinterest in Japanese. Thanks to a little help from Google Translate, I was able to figure out more or less how to do it. I then made a few adjustments, but here’s the original pin so you can have a look:

Let’s get started!

1. Cut 7 strips of fabric that are roughly 2cm wide and 30cm long. Cut 1 strip of fabric that is 2cm wide and 50cm long.

cut strips for tassel
tassel keyrings how to

2. If you’re using jersey fabric, pull gently on each piece so that it curls up into itself. Lay the shorter strips on top of each other in a nice and neat pile. Thread the long strip through the keyring and tie a double knot tightly around the bundle of shorter strips, right in the middle. Wiggle the knot so that it is opposite the keyring.

how to make a tassel keyring
tie a double knot.JPG

3. Hold the bundle with the keyring at the top. Grab one tail of the long piece and wrap it tightly twice around the head of the bundle. Thread the darning needle onto this strip and tuck it behind the two wraps you just made. This tucks the tail neatly behind.

wrapping top of tassel
wrap the top of the tassel
how to make a tassel keyring

4. Find the other long tail and tie a tight double knot underneath the tassel. Try to tie it so that it sits in the middle, with strands on each side so that it’s hidden when the tassel is hanging right side up.

5. Trim the tails so that they’re all the same length and clip it to your keys, to a bag, anywhere really!

finishing off tassel keyring
how to make a tassel keyring

Share the tassel love! These are great little gifts to include in party bags, as party favours, as little gifts for friends and family, or to put on your spare set of keys.

Did you have a go at making some of these tassel keyrings? I’d love to see how they turned out! You can find me on Instagram @sewcial_circle.

How to make a rainbow pom-pom mobile

Anyone else crazy abut the rainbow trend for interiors? I just love that these simple colourful arches are making their way into our homes in all sorts of ways and especially that you can find them now in alternative “rainbow colours.” I’ve really never liked the traditional red/orange/yellow/green/blue/violet colour scheme mostly because… I hate orange. Like really don’t like the colour… at all. Anyone else have such an extreme aversion to a colour?

Anyways, who says you have to stick to the rules when it comes to fun, fancy, handmade rainbows? Not me!

Here’s a little DIY to try, and it includes some of my favourite skills: painting and pom-poms.

pom-pom rainbow mobile

What you’ll need:

  • Rainbow & Cloud Mobile Pack (comes in a pack of two with a lovely cloud too!) —> pre-drilled by me! So you’re ready to go and don’t have to faff with the drill.

  • Strong string or embroidery floss (this comes in the pack)

  • Pom-pom yarn (I used an assortment of yarns from my stash, see notes below on which yarns/colours I used)

  • Assorted acrylic paints

  • Darning needle

  • Paintbrushes

  • Scissors

  • Loome tool (for making your pom-poms of course!)

  • Optional: seed beads and glue

These are some of the colours I used for my pom-poms

pom-pom yarn colours

Let’s get started!

1. The first time I attempted this, I painted my rainbow freehand but didn't really like the effect because it was uneven. So I painting over it in white, and painted it again. When working with acrylics over wood, a white primer base will definitely help your colours POP, especially if you’re using lighter shades and neons.

If you want brighter and more opaque colours, mix them with the slightest amount of white paint. This is also a good tip when using cheaper quality paints (which I’m not knocking! I love buying paints from Flying Tiger because they have the coolest colours, they just don’t cover the way artist quality paints do).

rainbow mobiles
painting rainbow mobile

Choose how many colours you want in your rainbow and measure out the bands along the bottom, in the middle and at the two mid-way points. I wanted 5 colours so I made marks along the rainbow about 1.4cm apart from each other. Then I very lightly sketched the lines so that I knew where to paint.

Now get painting! Once you’re finished (it might need a second coat on some colours) set it aside to dry while you make your pom-poms.

2. Get your Loome tool ready and choose which colour pom-poms you’re going to make.

I love the Robot model for pom-poms because it has the two different sizes. I used the smaller end primarily for these pom-poms and I even used a dinner fork to make the teeny tiny pom-poms! If you’ve never made a pom-pom with a Loome tool before, check out my previous post, How to make a pom-pom.

rico design yarn making pom-poms
making pom-poms

3. Now it’s time to add the strings to your wooden rainbow. Tie three strings together with a knot at the top and thread each strand through a hole from the back. Do the same for the other side of the rainbow. Here’s a photo of what that looks like from the back. Because the pom-poms will pull the strings tight, you don’t really need to fix it in any other way, just trim the tails short.

adding strings to the pom-pom mobile
rainbow mobile for a kids room

4. lay out your pom-poms so you have an idea where to thread them on and then use a blunt darning needle to thread the strong string though the middle of the pom-poms.

When threading pom-poms to hang completely in the middle of a string, first look for the middle string on your pom-pom. Then thread the needle completely in the centre of this, so that the middle string runs perpendicular to the needle. To secure your pom-poms in place, either tie a big knot under the pom-pom or try this other trick below.

adding pom-poms to a mobile
glueing the beads in place

5. When you’re happy with the placement of your pom-poms thread a small seed bead under each pom-pom. Use a small dab of glue to secure the bead right up inside the pom-pom. Let it dry and this should help keep your pom-pom from sliding down the string with gravity.

 
attaching the beads to hold the pom-poms in place
 

6. Once the glue is dry, trim the strings short underneath and attach a small loop to the top of your mobile to hang it up.

pom-pom rainbow mobile

Some things used in this tutorial were gifted by Rico Designs: the wooden rainbow and cloud mobile pieces (but I loved them so much I purchased some for the shop) and six balls of yarn to use for the pom-poms.

How to make a bunny pom-pom necklace

These cute little necklaces are the perfect craft for Easter weekend. Plus, you can use up some of your yarn and felt scraps in the process.

bunny pom pom necklaces

What you’ll need:

  • 1 medium sized pom-pom (if you need a refresher how to make a pom-pom with your Loome tool, check out our post: How to make a pom-pom)

  • Cord for the necklace (thick string, nylon cord, anything goes)

  • Felt scraps

  • Fabric glue or glue gun

  • Scissors

  • Darning needle

  • A few bristles from a clean broom

bunny pompom materials needed

1. Make your pom

These bunny necklaces start with a pom-pom. You can either make your pom-pom a very bunny-like colour like white, grey or brown, but multi-coloured pom-poms work just as well, just take a look at this one that a little girl made at a festival craft workshop I ran last summer! Serious heart eyes.

Screenshot 2019-03-26 at 11.53.39.png
bunny pom pom necklace how to

2. Cut out the bunny’s features from felt

Use any small scraps of felt to cut ears, inner ear pieces, a nose and eyes.

3. Attach the necklace cord

Thread your necklace cord onto a blunt darning needle. Separate the strands of the pom-pom to find the middle string. Run the darning needle under this string and out the other side. Tie the two ends into a knot to secure them.

IMG_5684.JPG
how to attach cord for a pom pom necklace

4. Attach the felt pieces

Now that you know which way is us on your pom-pom, it’s time to attach the ears, eyes, nose and whiskers. Start with the ears. Glue guns work great for this kind of thing because the glue sets really quickly. If you’re using fabric glue, you’ll need to prop up your pom-pom to dry over-night, or at least a couple of hours.

Start with the ears, separate the strands of the pom-pom near the necklace cord and put a bit of glue at the bottom of the ear. Tuck it into the gap so it sits nice and close to the middle of the pom-pom.

Do the same with the eyes, nestling them slightly into the pom-pom. You can always trim the pom-pom a big shorter around the eyes if they get hidden by the yarn.

For the nose, glue a few bristles from your dustpan and brush to the back of the nose. I used about 5 and cut them in the middle so that they splayed out nicely on each side. Then add a bit more glue and attach it to your pom-pom.

That’s it, you now have the most adorable little bunny pom-pom ever! These techniques are exactly the same for all sorts of different animals. Which ones will you make?

pom+pom+animals

Loved this tutorial?

Would you like more pom-pom project inspiration?

Sign up to my monthly newsletter to get project ideas, craft tips and ideas on what to make next with your Loome tool.

How to make a Kumihimo cord

I love, love, love these cords and how simple they are to make. It’s my go-to craft when I’m hopping on the Overground to a workshop or party, or know that I have to commute into the city to get materials. These are also great little cords to use up random yarn scraps… so no waste here!

Here’s a quick little tutorial how to make your own kumihimo cords with a Loome Pom-Pom Trim Guide.

kumihimo cord with Loome tool
crafting on the go with the loome

What you’ll need:

  • Yarn scraps: 7 strands that are at least 45cm long

  • Loome Pom-Pom Trim Guide

  • Scissors (only for trimming the ends when you’re done)

Let’s get making!

First, gather all the strands together and tie a knot in the end, leaving a bit of a tail so that you can tie it onto something later.

tying-knots-for-kumihimo.jpg
setting-up-yarn-for-kumihimo.jpg

Thread the knot through the hole and separate the strands so that each strand goes into a notch. There should be one empty notch and the knot should sit just inside the hole with the tail hanging out the other end. Hold the Trim Guide so that the empty notch is facing you.

kumihimo-cord-how-to.jpg
kumihimo-cord-pulling-down.jpg

Count to the left: 1, 2, 3. Take that third strand and pull it down into the empty notch.

Rotate the trim guide so that it’s facing you again.

Count to the left again: 1, 2, 3. Take that third strand and pull it down into the empty notch. Continue in this way, rotating the Trim Guide so that it’s facing you and gently pulling your cord through the back every so often. It doesn’t take long to make a kumihimo cord, one of the prettiest and simplest Japanese crafts. If you’d like the stop, I just twist all my strands together and pop the whole bundle into a little pouch and put it in my pocket or bag, so I can pull it out anytime I like to craft on the go.

kumihimo-cord-with-loome-tool.jpg
kumihimo-cords-with-loome-trim-guide.jpg

Use your cords as necklaces, friendship bracelets, decorations on gifts… anything really!

You can use any type of fibre to create these cords as well; so experiment! Raffia, thin t-shirt yarn, ribbon, cord, embroidery floss… the possibilities are endless. What kind of cord will you make?


If you want to see the cord-making in action,

check out this video by Loome:

LOVE YA papercut card template for Valentine's Day

Whether you’re in the “Valentines Schmalentines” camp or you’re already dresses in red and pink from head to toe in anticipation for Feb the 14th, it’s nice to get a card that says, LOVE YA. Because we all like to know why we’re loved and it’s even better to tell someone else why they’re the sparkle of your eye.

Here’s a simple paper-cut card template that you can use to make a handmade card (because if we’re really going to go all-out this Valentine’s Day, you might as well make the card by hand!). Paper cutting is fairly easy with the right tools and you don’t need to be particularly artistic or creative to get beautiful results, which is why my paper cut workshops and parties in London are so popular!

handmade-papercut-valentines.jpg

What you’ll need:

papercut-valentines-day-card.jpg

TRACE

Print the template page at 100% on your home printer. Don’t scale or fit to the page.

 Cut around the dotted line. When printed at 100%, this square should measure 13.5cm x 13.5cm and fit a standard square greeting card.

Open your card and lay it down in front on you. On the left-hand side of the inside of the card, place your sheet of graphite paper face down and then lay your template on top of this. 

Trace along the lines of the template until the whole design has been transferred onto your card. If you need to peek to see if you’ve traced it all, just pinch one corner, making sure you have all the layers secure, and lift up the graphite paper.

papercut-valentines-day-card-blank.jpg
template-traced-onto-card.jpg
tracing-template-for-papercut-cards.jpg
cutting-out-template.jpg

CUT

Get your scalpel and start cutting! It’s important to always cut towards your body when paper-cutting. Using a fresh, sharp blade is also important in order to get clean cuts. Rotate the card as you work around the design. Remember to cut along all the lines.

GLUE

Choose the backing paper and cut it to size once all the pieces of the design have been cut out. Carefully use a glue stick to apply glue around the edge of the card and along the chunkier parts of the design. You don’t want to get glue on the front of the card, so I usually just do a few dabs here and there in the middle so that the backing paper sticks down.

papercut-valentines-day-card-all-done.jpg
glueing-the-card.jpg

Place your card underneath a few heavy books until dry.

TA-DA! That’s it. Write a mushy note inside for your #1 and tell then why you love them!