Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Tissue Paper Pom Poms from Vintage Sewing Patterns

I am careful about taking apart or using up vintage materials in order to make other crafts. Sometimes I want to leave a vintage item intact, as it's a piece of history. Other times, using the item lets it be seen and appreciated as part of a new whole.


I bought a big box of vintage dress patterns at an estate sale a few years ago, and since then, I have made many a pom pom out of the previously uncut aged tissue. They always get compliments. The best compliment of all is seeing the idea used by others.

To make these pom poms, you'll need an old tissue paper pattern and a piece of wire. You can use chalk on the edges of the tissue, if desired. I usually keep them plain unless it's a retro tea or party and I need to match the theme color of the honoree.

Take about eight to twelve layers of tissue paper and lay them atop one another. Cut out a rectangle -- the size depends on the size you want your finished pompom to be. I usually do somewhere around 15 inches on the short size and 20 on the longer side for a typical pom, or thereabouts. Sometimes I will make two smaller ones (perhaps 10" by 12" rectangles) and a larger one for a grouping. 


Begin to fold them up, along the LONG side, a bit over an inch, perhaps 1.25" folds for the large poms (and slightly less than an inch for the smaller poms). Keep folding them the whole way. You can think about if you want flat ends, pointed ends, or rounded ends at this point, once all the sheets have been pleated. Cut the ends at an angle like a rooftop if you want the points or a semicircle if you prefer the rounding.


Take your bit of wire (or string if you have no wire) and twist it very tightly around the middle of the folded "fan." Leave long ends if you have enough wire, so that you can hang it. Start pulling up a single sheet at a time from one side towards the middle wired area, then the other side. Be gentle but don't worry if something tears, because it will not be noticeable and these are supposed to be rustic anyway. I find I have good luck in slipping my fingers under the pulled up pieces and pushing carefully, kind of wiggling along the pleats, to make the lifted sheets as near to the middle as I can get them. Do one side, then the other.


You can also squeeze or bunch the pleats once half the sheets have been pulled up, before you then flip it over and start pulling the sheets towards the middle from the "other" side. 



Now the pom pom is ready to be fluffed. Just use your fingers to spread, smooth, place or bunch the pleats as needed. 


Simple, and simply pretty!

Do you have a favorite reuse/make do/simple times craft?

    Kind regards,

    Olde Dame Holly Rose


  1. Very sweet...and heaven knows I have enough "vintage" sewing patterns LOL. I am not seeing a "follow me" option for your new blog here....just one to subscribe by email??? I have too many issues with my email to rely on that so if there is another option, please let me know. Thanks. ~Robin~

  2. Halloo Joanne and Robin of TheCrankyCrow -- got the Follow button set up - nice to see you! Still working out some kinks...but enjoying blogging AND the lovely autumn weather that has begun! Ta for now!


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