Here's a quickie for the Easter Baskets. I made these for a birthday party favor last weekend, but after my daughters saw these colorful tassels ... I had to make one for them too.
Natural Hemp Cord
Elmer's Glue - I use this to stiffen the ends for easier threading
Small Natural Wood Beads
16-20mm Wood Bead
Florescent Yellow Rubberized 8 mm Beads
Florescent Yellow Enamel Paint
Clear Gloss Spray Paint
Fraycheck or Superglue
Florescent Yellow Polyester Thread
1. Mask off the larger wood bead in the way you want to paint it. You can slant or half it. You can paint the whole bead or leave it natural. I like mine slanted or half painted.
2. Paint several coats and let dry in between. I like to paint with the bead on a chopstick... stick the handle end into a piece of Styrofoam to dry. When you're happy with the amount of color, you can spray it with a clear gloss spray paint.
3. During dry time, prep the necklace and make the tassel. First cut a piece of hemp cord about 80" long. This may seem long but if you want a long necklace that slips over head you'll want plenty for knotting. It's better to have too much than too little.
4. Next start on the tassel by winding yellow thread around a book (6" wide or so) about 75-100 times. Slide the thread off of the book, carefully gather it at its half point and wrap it around the hemp cord half way point (40"). Take another piece of the same yellow thread, wind it around and knot it. I like to wind it again and knot it again for extra security. I also dab a little fray check or super glue on the knot just for good measure. Secure! Then cu the loops and trim the tassel.
5. Dab a bit of Elmer's glue on the end pieces of the hemp cord. I like to twist it between my fingers to make each end stiff and straight. * FYI, if these aren't good threading ends, it makes it tough to get through the bead holes easily and this project that once seemed simple becomes a real drag. So these ends need to be good and stiff and tight for threading. This cord doesn't go through needles easily, and many needles are too large for these smaller beads. I've experimented and the glue ends has proven to be the easiest method.
6. Once the wood bead is dry you can thread it onto the necklace by taking both ends together and putting it through the wood bead hole. I like the yellow half to be closer to the yellow tassel. Take the bead all the way down to the tassel top and superglue it into place, tightly so that you don't see any hemp cord. I glue it so that the bead doesn't slip through all the way.
7. Knot at the top of the wood bead and start adding beads to each strand to your desired point. I had some medium sized beads (about 8-10 mm) that I used first, you can put two or three of these first, then the smaller. For little kids, it's cute to skip these middle sized beads. After each bead I knot it tightly into place before adding another bead. I put the same number of beads on each strand and stop at about the collar bone point. I like seeing a bit of string at the top but you can keep adding beads all the way around to the top if you'd like.
That's it, you can make this as short or long as you'd like. For women, these were about 10" o beads and then some string. For kids I did less.
Happy Easter! xoxo