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.
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
- 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
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).
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.
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.
Poke your earring post through the felt circle as well, also securing it with a bit of hot glue.
Add the earring back, and your new fabric jewelry is all done!