How to make yarn butterflies and upcycled wooden tapestry bobbins

Some people love weaving with yarn butterflies.

And some people (like me) don’t.

I love wooden tapestry bobbins and I love making each one a unique piece- and I especially like using upcycled wood to make them.

So, for those of you who like yarn butterflies, here’s a video tutorial on how to make yarn butterflies:

And, here’s how I make my one of a kind tapestry bobbins, which wouldn’t suit everyone, but I love them and find them to be a pleasure to use:

Start with a piece of cast off wood. In this case, a wooden plaque (don’t use chipboard or mdf ! This needs to be hardwood)

a thrown away plaque from a garage sale

Flip it over, and draw in the rough lines for the first cuts:

copyright Noreen Crone-Findlay

next, saw them into rough shape:

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Working on getting more definition and shaping:

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All the wooden offcuts are going to be burned in the wood burning stove in the studio in the winter- nothing’s wasted!

copyright Noreen Crone-Findlay

When the rough saw shaping is done:

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I move over to the belt sander:

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and I do a whole bunch of sanding (very carefully)

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Did I mention that this is a really slow, meditative process? Yup.

Go slowly… and pay attention….

Then, it’s off to work with a bunch of different small sanding drums:

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and files:

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And more sanding:

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and then, I draw faces on each one, and get out my wood burning tool and draw and burn faces and the year on each one:

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Here’s a closer look:

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I just listen to what each bobbin wants, and then I draw on their faces. Some of them crack me up.

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Like the ‘Get to the Point’ guy… 3rd from the left….Β  I know, I am easily amused….

And, here they are, all wrapped up and ready to weave!

copyright Noreen Crone-Findlay

I hope that the photos will all open for you!

So, happy butterflies, and happy bobbin-ing!

Happy weaving! πŸ™‚



Filed under eco crafts & green projects, Loom & looms & small loom weaving, tutorial & how to, weaving & handwoven

6 responses to “How to make yarn butterflies and upcycled wooden tapestry bobbins

  1. Bren

    I love all the different faces! They look like they are waiting patiently to be chosen next, and the one in the middle is just going on and on while the others listen!


  2. Love seeing the step-by-step process – it does look meditative. How wonderful to have all the tools at hand to make them. And then using them in the studio is like have a whole bunch of weaver’s elves πŸ™‚

    Happy Weaving,


    • Thanks, Terri πŸ™‚
      Yes, having a woodworking workshop is really a blessing, and I couldn’t imagine not being able to blend my love of wood with yarn πŸ™‚
      And, yes, it is so meditative, and also there is a spark of mischief there too, with all those little elves having their opinions! LOL


  3. Pingback: Cheap and Cheerful alternatives for tapestry bobbins | Tottie Talks Crafts Blog

  4. Pingback: Cheap and Cheerful alternatives for tapestry bobbins |

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