I spend my left-handed childhood using scissors not meant for me and have had a bit of a hang up about my inability to cut things in a straight line ever since. Whether it was cutting fabric, or trimming a fringe on a crochet scarf or shawl or simply tidying up a tassel, I would sigh in the knowledge I was probably going to mess it up (even with left handed scissors!). That is until I found what I call ‘The pizza way’.
So in this post I’m going to share my super quick foolproof (even for me!) hack for trimming your yarn fringes.
Keep reading for a written photo and video tutorial
What you’ll need
The secret ingredient is using a good quality rotary trimmer. You could use a craft knife or Stanley knife but I like that the pizza cutter rotating action of the rotary trimmer stops any dragging which could send things off kilter!
Safety warming: PLEASE be careful when using these, and as soon as you have finished make sure you put the safety back back on immediately (I did not to this when making this tutorial and, you guessed it, I just brushed my little finger just past the blade and cut it – don’t be as foolish as me!)
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You’ll also need a cutting mat (you could use a chopping board), a solid sturdy ruler (30cm / 12in if possible), an iron and a tea towel
This process will work for smaller tassels too, but for the purpose of this tutorial I am using fringe as an example. It could be on any project (sewing, knitting, or crochet) but I have demonstrated on a crochet scarf (the pattern is a wip at the moment!)
For the full video tutorial, scroll to the end of the picture tutorial 🙂
Step 1: Add your fringe
Add your fringe to your project, whatever form it takes, and make sure you’re happy with the amount of fringing you’ve used.
There are many ways to add fringe to your project. I’ve made a very quick video below showing how I added mine in this example
Step 2: Comb and flatten out your fringe
You will need to prepare your fringe before cutting . This is the most important step to get a good result.
You could use your fingers or a comb to brush out the fringe so all the strands lay flat. If you’re using a comb, think about whether that might change the texture of the yarn. You may want to brush it out to untwist the ply, but if not, be gentle!
Use an iron on a cool heat to flatten out any kinks. I recommend putting a tea towel or fabric between the iron and the yarn, particularly if you’re using acrylic as direct heat can ‘break’ the fibres.
Some people use hair straightners for this – this works great on tassels – again – be aware of the impact direct heat can have!!
Here’s what my scarf looked like after a quick tidy up and press
Step 3: Line up your ruler and cut
Measure the length of your fringe (make a note of how long you are cutting it, especially if you are repeating the process on the other end of a scarf!).
Line your ruler up where you want to cut, making sure it’s straight.
There’s a saying in sewing which applies here – “measure twice, cut once” – do that!
Once you’re happy with the alignment, hold the ruler firmly in place and roll your rotary cutter once over the yarn ends. Ensure you apply enough pressure that you cut right through the yarn.
Finally, maybe the most statisfying part of the whole thing… wipe away the yarn ends with a finger and smile at the wonder of your beautiful straight edge!
That’s it! Simple as!!!
Now I want pizza!
Here’s the fringe trim tutorial in video form!