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making tassels

August 28, 2011

homemade tassels are a wonderful way to add an extra special touch to a gift — wrapped around the neck of wine bottle or bag of coffee beans.  I generally make them from jute twine or cotton string.  The rustic look of jute twine appeals to my love of contrasting textures.  I keep this one in the bedroom dangling from the desk lamp.

last weekend at the shore, I spent several hours walking among the dunes looking for seashells and was happy to find enough to fill my pail.  I’m always thankful to find extra small seashells that I can use for embellishing homemade items.  today I decided to make a jute tassel with one of those tiny seashells.


I like a simple top finish on my tassels, so I use a button.  If you’d like to make one, here’s a brief set of simple instructions.  The first 4 steps are essentially the same for any sort of tassel.  The photo tutorial for the home sweet homemade buttom-top version begins at step 5.

(1) start by wrapping jute around a piece of cardboard, about the size of a greeting card – about 30-35 wraps for a fluffy tassel.

(2) Secure one end by gathering all the loops in a snug knot tied with a separate piece of twine.  Don’t worry about cutting the ends of that gathering piece yet.

(3) Slide the tassel off the card and cut the looped ends.  Now fold the tassel over the other way, so the gathering knot is inside.

(4) Smooth the jute strands at the top closely, then wrap several strands of thread around the upper portion of the tassel to band it together, keeping a long tail at the beginning end.  Tie the two ends, but don’t trim them yet.  You’ll want a tail at least 3-4 inches long to work with later.

(5) Create a hanging loop by braiding 9 or 12 strands of thread.  Make the braid at least 15 inches long to have plenty of thread to work with in the next several steps. Tie a knot at each end of the braid to secure, and go find your needle threader to help with these next steps.  First thread both ends of the braid through two opposing holes of a 4-hole button and slide the button to the center of the braid.

Thread each end of the braid through the securing jute tie piece at the top of the tassel.  Thread the ends under this jute strand in opposite directions.

(6) Now slide the button down the braid toward the top of the tassel and thread the two loose ends of the braid up through the button.  Use the two opposing buttonholes that are empty.


(7) Thread the loose ends back down toward the tassel through alternate holes and position the button at the top of the tassel. Adjust the braided loop for the length that you desire.

(8) Tie the ends of the braid below the button to secure and snip off the ends.  Tie an overhand knot with the braided loop on top of the button to finish.  At this time, tie your embellishment of choice to the main part of the tassel with the tail ends of the banding thread.


(9) For a more finished look, thread the tail ends of the banding thread through a needle and feed them into the center of the tassel before cutting them off.  Now, just fluff up your tassel by unraveling the jute.  Trim the bottom as needed to give it a nice rounded appearance when you’re finished.


It won’t be flat, so making it even across the bottom isn’t necessary.  Also, irregularity of shape is one of the things that makes this homemade tassel beautiful and visually interesting.  <other home sweet homemade tassels here>

If you happen to make one, please let me know–I’d love to feature yours here as a follow-up!

Thank you for reading 🙂




sharing with
{Re}create into something new at Not So Simple Housewife
{wow me} wednesday at ginger snap crafts
VIP Party at Designer Garden
Tickled Pink at 504 Main
Potpourri Friday at 2805
Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Creek Cottage
It’s a Party at A Creative Princess
{Primp} your stuff Wednesday at {Primp}
Will see it Wednesday at Fabric Bows and More
Tutorials & Tips Tuesday at Home Stories A2Z
Tip Junkie
Tuesday To Do at The Blackberry Vine
Glitter Party at Running with Glitter
More the Merrier Monday at The DIY HSHP
DIY Project Parade at The DIY Showoff
Amaze Me Monday at Dittle Dattle
Just Something I Whipped Up at The Girl Creative
Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch
Masterpiece Monday at Boogieboard Cottage
Nifty Thrifty Sunday at Nifty Thrifty Things
Sunday Showcase at Under the Table and Dreaming by Stephanie Lynn
Sister Sunday at Sisters of the Wild West
25 Comments leave one →
  1. August 28, 2011 5:57 pm

    These are beautiful. Love the texture!

  2. August 28, 2011 6:45 pm

    What a great idea! It would be unique on a gift. Thanks for sharing.
    Saw you on the Sunday Showcase.

  3. August 28, 2011 9:08 pm

    Very nice! I really like the natural look of the jute, your beads and little shells are the perfect finishing touch. Thanks so much for the tutorial.

  4. August 28, 2011 10:08 pm

    Fabulous! I can’t wait to make some. You’re so creative!

  5. August 28, 2011 11:53 pm

    ” wrapped around the neck of wine bottle or bag of coffee beans.”

    What a GREAT idea for using them, Diane! I gotta remember that the next time I bring a bottle of wine to someone house for dinner. What a nice touch!

    Love you newest tassel creation with the sea shells and beads!

    You’re instructions are very clear and easily understood. You should be a craft teacher!

    Hope you had a wonderful weekend, my dear friend!

    X to you and Cristybella!

  6. August 29, 2011 1:13 am

    I have made tassels too but with more traditional elements. I like the idea of the jute. Good idea. You creative thing you.

  7. Linda@Coastal Charm permalink
    August 29, 2011 1:16 am

    I think I could do these:) So very CUTE!!


  8. August 29, 2011 3:16 pm

    These are great, Diane! I love the turquoise with the jute. You do the best tutorials, and your photos are always fabulous!
    Did you find any shark’s teeth on the beach?

  9. August 30, 2011 12:35 pm

    These would be super cute as curtain tie backs…and I just happen to be searching for ideas! 🙂

  10. August 30, 2011 4:25 pm

    I have been looking for a tutorial like this. And even better- it’s from a fellow Texas blogger. I am pinning this idea!
    Stop by and see me too-

  11. September 1, 2011 9:04 pm

    I love these tassels! Of course, I love anything with jute! Great tutorial! Thank you for linking up to It’s a Party!

  12. September 2, 2011 4:11 pm

    Great idea! I love the way they look:)

  13. September 2, 2011 9:07 pm

    I’m so happy you brought your project to the Potpourri Friday Party. It’s so cute & I think I’ll have to try my hand at this project.

    Again, thank you for linking to Potpourri Friday and helping to make it a success! I appreciate you and hope you wil link up again next week!

  14. September 4, 2011 2:38 am

    What an exceptional tutorial! Of course, the tassels are great, too. I’ve tried making them before and mine never look as fabulous as your. I’m definitely going to try your method. Thanks for posting.

  15. September 4, 2011 8:26 pm

    Your tassels are so charming! Thanks so much for linking them up to the Tuesday To Do Party! Can’t wait to see what you’ve been up to this week!

  16. September 5, 2011 12:27 am

    I cannot believe I missed this tutorial.. I am so going to make some of these. They are BEAUTIFUL!!!! I hope you are well Friend!!

  17. Ellen permalink
    September 6, 2011 2:37 pm

    I just love the thoughts of making a tassel with jute and seashells….I just love the ocean. I will need to make a shell tassel for a friend who owns a house on the beach and has beach theme…..I will attach to a wine bottle. Thank you for such a wonderful idea. Your tassels are amazing.

  18. September 19, 2011 11:30 pm

    This is so great! I love it! Thanks for sharing it with {Re}creation Into Something New Wednesdays at Not So Simple Housewife! Hope to see more from you this upcoming Wednesday!

    Kaitlin-The Not So Simple Housewife

  19. September 21, 2011 3:38 pm

    Oh My GOOODNESSS! I am the decorate in tassels queen so I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to have stumbled upon your great tutorial! I always thought it would be neat to make one someday, but haven’t. I love the idea of using jute or rafia or something more rustic-like. SO IN LOVE WITH THIS! Thanks for the fantastic tutorial. You are SO pinned!! 😉

  20. November 20, 2011 10:06 pm

    Thanks so much for this tutorial! Your tassels look amazing! I’d been wanting to create one, but wasn’t sure how… I’m going to try this out. Thanks again!

  21. July 23, 2012 6:16 am

    Just found this post through Too Much and pinned it. Love these tassels.

  22. May 19, 2013 6:16 pm

    Love your blog and this project – such a fun and interesting addition to the decor! Just wanted to let you know I featured it in my roundup of jute craft projects here. Feel free to check it out if you want and hope you like it! : )

    -Mel the Crafty Scientist


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