Tassels or fringes seem to be all the rage these days. You can use them as a garland above or under the buffet table, attached to balloons and tissue balls, and pretty much anywhere else you can think of.
I love tassels and I thought of many ways I to use them for my mother’s 80th. Birthday Party; but when I started shopping for them I was appalled at the price. The cheapest I found was a tassel kit for $5.98 plus shipping from Just Artifacts. The kit includes ready to assemble pre-cut tissue paper and twine; after assembly I would have 16 tassels 6″ each and string, but for this deal you don’t get to pick out colors, you have to choose from their pre-packaged color combinations. If you want to choose specific colors then you must buy the 2 tassel kit ($1.10) or the 4 tassle kit ($1.98).
Wow! Buying these kits could get pretty costly, and I still had to put them together. It was time to find an alternative. Since the tassels were made of tissue paper I started with that, there were many tutorials on the internet using tissue paper. It worked, but was a bit tedious because it involved working with larger sheets of paper, lots of cutting and folding, and hot glue. I also have trouble working with the thin tissue, it tears and wrinkles to easily for me.
There had to be a better way. And there is, I recalled childhood party decorations using crepe paper streamers that we would twist and braid to make ropes and chains. I thought why not use those streamers, they come in rolls which would be easier to work with and they aren’t as fragile as tissue.
Here’s a real simple way to make those tassels, it’s cheap too! Rolls of streamers can be purchased at the dollar store, party store, or the party section of any discount store for less than a dollar a roll. You can make lots of tassels from each roll; best of all you can make them in any color combination and any length to fit your needs. However if you want to make metallic streamers you will have to use mylar paper and hot glue.
What you need:
Rolls of crepe paper streamers in your choice of colors
1. Cut 4 strips of crepe paper 18″ long
If you are making a solid color tassel then cut 4 strips of the same color – if you want a 2 tone tassel like the one in the photo cut 2 strips of each color – if you want 4 tone then cut one strip of each color. (If you want a fuller tassel then cut 6 strips in the color combination you want.)[spacer height=”-20px”]
2. Stack the strips together neatly.
3. Fold the stacked strip in half.
4. Cut a thin strip from the bottom edge to 2″ from the top fold 3 times.
5. Unfold the streamer keeping the uncut section neatly stacked together.
The uncut section should be 4″ long.[spacer height=”-20px”]
6. Fold the uncut section 3-4 times forming a thin strip of uncut section.[spacer height=”-20px”]
7. Tightly twist the uncut strip starting at one cut or “fringed” section to the other.
Twist like you would wring out a towel..one hand twist forward the other hand twist backward. Twist as tight as you can without the section curling around itself. You should now have a twisted middle section with fringes on either end.[spacer height=”-20px”]
8. Bring both ends of twisted section together to form a “U” shape at the top.[spacer height=”-20px”]
9. Slip a pen in the “U”.
Hold the twisted section at the bottom (where the fringe starts) and twist the pen like you would a cork screw; it should look like a twist tie around the pen.
10. Slip the pen out and you’re done!
The hole left by the pen is where you will thread the tassel on to baker’s twine, string, or ribbon. You can make the hole size smaller by twisting it until the hole is the size you prefer.
Your tassel is ready to use! To make a garland string them on twine to your desired length in any color combination you want. I’m sure you’ll find many ways to use tassels, and now that you can make them yourself it shouldn’t cost you a mint!
Show me how you used your tassels!