Welcome to this tutorial! Today I’m teaching how to make leather tassels with caps using leather remnants. This is very in tune with the Slow Stitch philosophy because we make something lovely from what some would consider unusable scraps.
This tutorial was inspired by the Moroccan Kilim rug handbags that I’ve been making. They’re one-of-a-kind, beautiful, eclectic, and me being me, I wanted to add a little something extra, an added pop with a leather tassel! Normally I make them without any hardware, but I found these lovely antiqued bronze tassel caps, and had to incorporate them.
I gathered these materials:
Collect the materials and find a flat workspace. Measure leather to cut equal fringes with pencil, ruler and rotary cutter. Or you can eyeball it with scissors, I love this method too.
After fringes are cut, line them up and cut each to be a little shorter than the previous one. I did this because I like the tassel looking a little more wild. Or you can make them all the same length. Dealer’s choice. Set aside.
Next, cut interfacing or stabilizer to width of the tassel cap. I ended up using stabilizer because it’s super thin and easier to hide in the cap. I cut mine to be 0.5 inch wide by 10.5 inches long. The length of your tassel might vary a little based on the thickness of your leather. I like to error on the side of caution and make it longer (you can always cut it down later).
Using the two pieces of parchment paper, bond the stabilizer and stitch witchery together. My iron’s heat setting is between wool and cotton, but might vary based on your iron. I also used my wood desk as my ironing surface because it’s heat resistant. Of course, I say that now. But if my house burns down, I’ll know what probably started the fire.
Might be smart to use an ironing board.
Then I lined up the fringe. I did a little at a time, making sure to use the parchment paper on top. This part can be a little tricky, because you don’t want to iron too far down, or you could alter the leather. I made sure to only iron as far down as the interfacing (a half inch). After ironing, double check that everything is bonded.
Turn the fringe over and iron one more time to make extra sure the leather is bonded to the interfacing.
And voilà, a strip of fringe!
And now the (maybe messy) fun part- glue! Turn the strip over and add glue to the whole length of stabilizer.
Then roll the fringe, making sure to keep it tight and even along the top.
Now is a good time to see if the tassel top will fit into the cap. If no, remove the necessary fringe strips. Then add glue to the top and a little to the sides of the tassel. I also added a little glue to the inside of the cap.
Finally, add the screws that came with the cap. Take your time with this, because rushing can cause the screw heads to strip. And yes, I speak from experience.
Screw slowly until the heads are flush with the cap.
We did it! A beautiful new tassel and cap made from remnants. Isn’t it fancy?! I hope you enjoyed this How-To and love your new tassel. And if you don’t have time to make one or need more color inspiration, you can check out the other tassels in my store.
Have a great day and thanks for reading!
Hello, I’m Maren. I was raised in the wilds of Oregon. Hunting and gathering and chasing coyotes.