Last month at Maker Faire HK, I attended a workshop to learn the beginnings of making temari—small decorative thread balls. I have yet to try the geometric patterns but thought I'd show you how to make the simplest one.
You'll need two or three different colour thread spools, tissue, and a needle with a big eye. Crumple up the tissue into a ball shape, grab the ends of the thread from the spools and start wrapping—not too loosely and not too tightly. Criss cross over the threads. It's easiest to put the spools in a small tray so that they can roll in place as you pull the three strings to wrap.
Keep wrapping, rotating and wrapping so that the tissue ball is covered uniformly.
When the entire ball is covered and no white is showing, leave approximately 15cm of thread, cut and put the ends of all three through the eye of the needle. Sew into the surface of the ball underneath the threads in a zigzag fashion. When you get near the end of the threads, sew one last stitch backwards from the direction you were coming from to "lock" the threads in place. Snip off the extra thread ends.
Use a thicker string or embroidery thread for the hanging loop. Sew through a small section of the temari ball with the needle and knot.
Have a lovely weekend and hope you try making some temari yourself!