I am going to start this week’s blog by sharing something special that was made for me by one of the ladies who comes to the Monday night ‘Bee Creative Sessions’ because I was really touched to receive it and it is so beautifully made.
I have really been enjoying running the sessions, the group are great to work with, but also because it has encouraged me to try some new things and it’s been fun! We have moved from recycled origami to useful sewing skills and now we are playing with a bag of donated wool.
Pom-poms are so gratifying to make and have a variety many uses, so that seemed as good a place to start as any. I have to confess I couldn’t quite remember how I had been taught to make them. I remembered cutting discs out of card out of cereal packets, with my either my mum or my nan. and making some to hand on my baby brothers carry cot in yarn the same two colours as my favourite hand-knitted tank top. I probably made a few more after that.
The session ran as a bit of a challenge to find the best way of making pom-poms and I realised quite quickly that my circle was too big and it was going to take ages to make one fluffy ball never mind several and the hole was too small to pass the ball of wool through! Then someone taught me how to use a pom-pom maker and what an efficient little machine they are! The dilemma for me though was that although they are quicker, I didn’t really want to buy them as they are plastic.
I decided to have a go at improving on the cardboard ring that I had used previously, by making it work similarly to the plastic pom-pom maker. I started by cutting the doughnut shape in half but that didn’t work too well as the wool slid off too easily, so I attached extra pieces of card to make a kind of ‘step’ to catch the wool at the end of each semi-circle. This worked quite well but the wool still escaped and this produced a sketchy ball shape which needed lots of trimming.
Making the whole shape again, with the extra bit and folding it over kept the wool together better and behaved more like the plastic pom-pom devices. Taping the two halves together meant that I could cut the pom-pom and tie it around the centre without too much trouble, although they do get somewhat tatty after making three or four pom-poms. But on the whole I am satisfied that I can make a batch much quicker using this template.
Our plan for this week is to string pom-poms together to make garlands, or have a go at making a pom-pom rug. The second project is quite ambitious but as we have three sessions left we should be ok. Here are some examples of what we are planning to do with our pom-poms.
I am particularly inspired by this project as it is time for a few home improvements in the hive and a luxury bath mat is just what I need before the colder weather chills the tiles. these projects all use larger pom-poms but smaller ones would be just as practical.
For the backing, I have chosen to use hessian as it’s a natural fibre, hard-wearing and relatively inexpensive to buy. To prevent the cut edges from fraying I have sealed them with PVA glue and hung them over the clothes airer to dry. They take at least a couple of hours to dry completely so I haven’t started my rug yet. Fingers crossed that I will get enough made before tomorrow night’s class, as I would like to make sure everyone that wants to make one gets the opportunity.
It’s going to good fun seeing how they all turn out!
Until next week
Keep creating, it’s good for the soul…
oh and google ‘quicker ways to make pom-poms’ instead of spending hours working it out, as someone else has probably done it already 🙂