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.

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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.

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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.

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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!

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What you’ll need:

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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.

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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.

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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!

Simple Christmas Bauble Gift Tags

Christmas is one of the busiest times of the year for me, with the shop and workshops, on top of trying to make it a special time of the year for my two little children. So, finding simple ideas that make a gift POP that don’t take any effort (shh don’t tell!), like this one, are right up my alley.

simple christmas handmade gift tags

These handmade Christmas gift tags are a really simple way to dress up a gift. Here’s a quick tutorial how to make them.

You’ll need:

  • blank gift tags (or make your own with sturdy card that’s 11 x 5.5cm and a hole punch)

  • glue stick

  • scraps of decorative paper

  • black pen

  • scissors

I used the circle die for my Sizzix Big Shot machine to cut out the circles but you do not have to have one of these to make these tags. Use a compass, or any small round object and trace around. My circles are 4cm in diameter.

  1. First draw the top of the bauble and the line down the centre of the tag.

  2. Glue your circle and place it on the tag so it slightly overlaps the black lines.

  3. Attach some ribbon or baker’s twine to the top of the tag and write a personal message on the other side.

christmas gift tag diy

How To Make A Pom-Pom Bat

Halloween is coming! I walked through the seasonal aisle at my local Sainsbury’s this afternoon. It was half ghoulish costumes for 4-foot zombies, witches, skeletons and monsters and half collectible Christmas shortbread tins. If you’d rather forego the plastic decorations for Halloween this year, I’ll show you how to create fun little bat pom-poms, which you can hang up in doorways, on your doorknobs and in the windows to greet your trick-or-treaters.

pom pom bat

What you’ll need:

  • Loome tool

  • Black yarn, any weight

  • Felt scraps in black and white

  • String for hanging

  • PVA glue or fabric glue

Make a pom-pom with your Loome tool

Use your black yarn to create a pom-pom with your Loome tool. If you’re using DK-weight yarn, you’ll need to wrap it around 140 times. If you’re using Aran-weight yarn, around 90 revolutions will do the trick. If you need more in-depth instructions on making a pom-pom with a Loome tool, just check out our previous post, How To Make A Pom-Pom.

Trim your pom.

How to make a pom pom bat
how to make a pom pom bat

Cut out the eyes and wings

Use your felt scraps to cut out two white circles, and two smaller black ones to go inside. Go ahead and glue those black circles down, before they get lost! Cut a small smiley mouth for your bat, but a row of jagged teeth also look great!

Cut two bat-shaped wings next, and you’re all done with the tricky cutting bits.

String it up

Before you glue on the bat’s face and wings, attach the string you’re going to use to hang it up. This way, you’ll know which way is up for your bat.

tie the string onto your pom pom bat to hang it up

Glue it all together

Using a hot glue gun or fabric glue, attach the eyes, teeth and wings onto your pom-pom. Separate the yarn a bit to nestle the pieces into your pom-pom, so that they’re nice and secure.

Ready, set, SPOOK!

Give it a moment to dry. This is really quick is you’ve used a glue gun. If you’ve used another kind of glue then you might want to wait a bit longer for it to dry. Hang up your bat and get ready to spook away all those ghosts and ghouls on Halloween night with your crew of pom-pom bats.

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pom pom bat with pumpkins

How To Make A Pom-Pom

One of the best things about making pom-poms is that you really don't need many tools, but if you have the right ones, then it's easy.

What you'll need to get started:

Making a pom-pom is a lot easier than it looks,

just start winding!

1. Secure the end of the yarn to any notch on either arm of any Loome tool model. Wind yarn around arms, make sure tension is not too tight or too loose. 

Note: Mix it up! You can use more than one colour. 

2. Wind 140 revolutions. When done, secure end to any notch, then cut. Note: Generally, with worsted weight yarn 90 revolutions will give you a 2.5cm* trimmed, dense pom-pom, 120=3cm, 175=4.5cm, 200+=5cm. (*approx.) 

3. Cut 30cm strong string. While yarn is on Loome tool, take strong string and tie a tight double knot around the centre of yarn bundle.

4. Gently wedge yarn bundle off the Loome tool. Flip yarn bundle and make another even tighter double knot on the other side.

5. Flip yarn bundle for a third time and make another even tighter double knot.

Note: Tight double knots hold the pom-pom together. 

6. Take scissors and cut loops on both sides in half. Make sure you cut all loops, some may be hiding.

7. Next, it's time to trim. Take the pom-pom trim guide, match it centre to centre. Start the haircut by snipping around the trim guide. Flip and repeat. Then, cut like a real haircut to finish shaping.

If you want more details on how to trim your pom-pom down, check out our post, How To Use The Pom-Pom Trim Guide. Don't have time to source all the materials separately? Grab one of our Pom-Pom Starter Kits; they come in different colourways and include a book of instructions, tips and projects to make with your pom-poms!

Happy pom-poming!