Following up on a previous post about experimental yoyos, I thought I’d pass along another method that is super-fast and fun. It’s called a “folded yoyo,” and creates a beautiful hexagonal shape ideal for applique or for stitching together into placemats, runners, or — if you’re motivated — a quilt. My favorite was to use them is to make them in different sizes, and applique them to the octagonal center orb that appears when four Vega Tanabata quilt blocks are sewn together.
Note: In the following steps, I refer to “thumb pressing.” For your practice project you might want to use a small craft iron instead. Once you get confident with your folding, you can easily make these without ironing.
Another note: These instructions are for right-handed users. If you’re a lefty, just work in reverse.
1. Thread a needle with any color you like, provided it matches your fabric well. Knot the thread, and keep the needle nearby because you will use it in the final step.
2. Pick up a circle of fabric with the wrong side facing you and fold it in half, bringing the bottom of the circle up to meet the top. Thumb-press the crease, and then unfold the circle. Rotate the circle 90 degrees and fold it again so that you have two creases: one running vertically, and one running horizontally.
3. With the wrong side facing you and the center crease running left to right, fold the bottom of the circle upward until it matches the center line. Thumb-press, and hold the fabric in place in the center with your left thumb and index finger.
4. Rotate the fabric about 45 degrees. Grasp the right edge of the bottom folded edge of the circle and bring this toward the center. Use your left thumb and index finger to hold this layer in place on top of the previously folded fabric.
5. Continue rotating your fabric 45 degrees at a time, until all of the points have been folded to the center.
6. With your threaded needle, take tiny stitches in the center points to tack them in place. Add a little embellishment of your choice: bead, button, or French knot.
As you can see in the photo above, these yoyos nest together beautifully. If you’re an ace with hand-stitching, you can sew the yoyos together into a beautiful mat or quilt. You can also use these in applique projects, easily blind-stitching through the folded edges to anchor them onto the base fabric.