How to make fabric yo-yo earrings

I really love yo-yos. Not the circular toy that goes up and down on a string– I was never all that great at those– but rather the little fabric circles first made popular in the 1930s.

I’ve made them in all different sizes – to embellish t-shirts, baby onesies, hair clips, and – one of my favorite simple, little creations – earrings! Every time I wear these, it seems I get a compliment, which always amazes me because they truly are an easy DIY project.

If you’re new to making yo-yos, you can check out a video tutorial I made on Simple Homemade last year (and you can also see some other ideas for using yo-yos). They require very few sewing skills – just a bit of cutting, ironing, and hand sewing, and they are a perfect little project for using up fabric scraps.

yo-yo earrings-1

After we make our yo-yos, we’ll simply be hot-gluing them to felt and earring posts/backs (I bought mine in bulk on Etsy). These make a great gift, poked onto a cute piece of cardstock and wrapped up all pretty.

Ready to get started? Read on for the simple tutorial.

How to make yo-yo earrings

Supplies:

  • fabric scrap cut into 2 circles about 2 1/4″ in diameter
  • needle & thread (color does not matter)
  • 2 scraps of felt (about 3/4″ in diameter)
  • 2 earring posts/backs
  • iron & ironing board
  • hot glue gun

DIY yo-yo earrings [SimpleMom.net]

The first step is to make your yo-yos. I found a little bucket that was just the right size– the bottom of it was about 2″ so I traced it onto my fabric and then cut out just outside the line to make my two circles (of course, you can adjust the size if you want bigger earrings, but smaller circles might be harder to work with).

yo-yo earrings-7

The basic gist of yo-yo making is to iron the edges about a quarter of an inch in towards the center, then sew a running stitch around that edge. Basically, you’ll be following this video, although before you cinch up the stitches all the way, you’ll need to add the earring posts/backs.

yo-yo earrings 6.jpg

With your yo-yo partially cinched up, poke the earring post through the center of the yo-yo from the inside. Dab a bit of hot glue between the fabric and the metal circle.

Cinch the yo-yo up all the way and sew through the bottom of the yo-yo, through the inside, right next to the earring post circle; then knot and trim the thread. Use your fingers to flatten your yo-yo so its pleats look nice.

yo-yo earrings-4

Poke your earring post through the felt circle as well,  also securing it with a bit of hot glue.

yo-yo earrings-2

Add the earring back, and your new fabric jewelry is all done!

yo-yo earrings-3

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8 Comments

  1. Melissa

    I could never do the yo-yo on a string thing, either. 😉

    Those earrings are super cute, Nicole! I wonder how I could make a yo-yo necklace… *wheels turning*

    • Nicole

      Oh yes! That would be so cute. Be sure to share if you come up with something. 🙂

  2. Jenn @ a Simple Haven

    I used to make these all the time, but never knew that a.) they were called yo-yos 🙂 or b.) that they’d look so cute on earrings! So fun.

  3. Kate

    So cute.

    I seriously doubt my crafting abilities – but I love these. If I can manage to pull some together….they would make such fine Christmas gifts.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Kind blessings to you,
    Kate 🙂

    • Nicole

      Very minimal crafting abilities required. Go for it and let me know if you have any questions! 🙂

  4. Alissa

    My 6 year old (son) is very interested in sewing – I credit Montessori – I think this would be a great project to do with him. Seems like the running stitch does not have to be very precise, right? And I bet he could think of many ways to turn these into gifts – earrings for teachers, necklace, bracelet. I’ll have to check out your other list of uses.

  5. Jeniffer Cooper

    These are simply amazing. Thanks for coming out such a super cute idea. I think people who are allergic to metals like gold or silver would find these Yo-Yo earrings pretty awesome. These fabric jewelries look trendy as well as fashionable.

  6. Jess

    Such a cute idea for earrings!

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