Saturday, October 30, 2021

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial Part 3


Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial Part 3

In this final part of the Sankakusui-Koma tutorial we will wrap the triangular bi-pyramid with the silk thread. This picks up from the previous post... 


Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial

1. If you did not secure the silk thread for wrapping before closing the 3D shape, use a piece of double stick tape as shown above. Work with the thread right out of the spool or card.


Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial

2. Secure the thread along one of the top spine with the thread coming out close to the top loop. 

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
3. Go around the loop, along the spine toward the point (blue arrow). 

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
4. Go around the the point (blue arrow) and go back towards the loop. The thread does not need to be flushed against the spine, this will get covered later with thread wrapping. 

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
5. Go around the next point shown with blue arrow. 

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
6. Now go around the last point. 

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
7. Continue the wrap following the thread shown with blue arrows. Go around each points keeping the thread right next to each other. 

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
8. As you continue you will see how the thread covers over the top edges and it crosses over at the middle on the sides of the triangular pyramid. 

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
9. To add a new color, or switch colors, use a piece of tape.

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
10. For this design, continue with both thread colors, keeping one on right and one on left, so they are side by side and do not cross over each other.

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Wrapping Silk Thread | Tutorial
11. When the shape is covered, cut the thread off the spool and card. Stitch it underneath the silk wrapping up towards the bi-pyramid edge, then entering back towards the tassel but entering 2 or two thread over. Cut the ends. 

Sankakusui-Koma Free Tutorial for an Origami and Traditional Japanese Thread Decorated Top aka Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari, or Dragonboat and Berlingot
Congratulation your ornament is finished! Summer, Winter and Autumn Twist Silks and all the supplies to make this project are available HERE

Notes, Options and Alternatives
Try any leftover thread you have. So far besides all the tops shown in the tutorial with the material listed, I also made a larger top with a 2 inch by 6 inch rectangular base with Madeira Silk Floss and Metallic Thread. I found the Madeira Silk Floss a bit matte, the metallic thread was perfect. I will keep posting more photos and suggestions. I plan to make a lot more as they will be part of my gift wrapping this year. 


Friday, October 29, 2021

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2

Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2

A bit of origami to make the tops, the triangular bi-pyramids called in Japanese Sankakusui-Koma. Continuing from the previous post... Turn rectangular cardboard shapes into a 3 dimensional forms...

Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2


You can start with a ready made koma form as shown here or make your own out of cardboard. The sizes of the ready made one I received from Japan are as follows:

Small (Very Tiny)
Japan is really into miniatures... 10 x 30 mm rectangle folds into a triangular bi-pyramid 14 mm wide at its center base and 11 mm tall

Medium (Perfect Small Size) - That's the one in this tutorial. 15 x 45 mm rectangle folds into a triangular bi-pyramid 21 mm wide at its center base and 17 mm tall

Large (Still Small) -  I will play around with this size next... 20 x 60 mm rectangle folds into a triangular bi-pyramid 28 mm wide at its center base and 22 mm tall

Larger Sizes - Print this PDF template at 100%. Or if you want smaller sizes print at lower percentage. Cut the paper shapes. Glue the shapes to cardstock or mark the cardstock the same way.  Cut the cardstock. Mark the folds, and score them using a ruler and the back of a butter knife or a bone folder if you have one. Fold away each at each score mark and smooth the fold with your ruler. 

Part 2. Foundation Shape

Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2
1. Orient correctly with score lines at back.  


Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2
2. Attach the tassel with a piece of double stick tape. For more precise rectangle pieces, cut the tape with scissors. The dispenser cutting edge tool is not accurate enough. If you want to add a bead between the top and the tassel, add it before this step. 


Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2
3. Fold cord back onto the double stick tape and cut. Repeat for loop. 

Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2
4. Apply drop of glue to secure. Ot if you prefer you can apply a second piece of tape over the first one as shown on next photo.

5. Pre-attach pieces of double stick tape on top left and left, and bottom right and right as shown in red. 

Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2
6. Secure thread for wrapping the shape with double stick tape. Leave it attached to the spool or card. Have it come out by the loop at top. Note: this tassel has a bead attached on the suspension cord. 

Sankakusui-Komas | Japanese Tops |  Foundation Shape | Tutorial Part 2
7. Fold top left corner toward loop. Secure double stick tape. Add more pieces of tape if necessary. 


8. Fold bottom right corner towards tassel. Secure tape, adding more if necessary. Add double stick tape to the three top and bottom edges of the triangular pyramid. You do not need to cover the base edge of the bi-pyramid.

Optional

• The very tips, the 3 corner at the base of the pyramids remain uncovered, so if you want, color them with a permanent marker like a sharpie. 

• Before closing the shape, fill it with rice or a bell if you want it to make sounds.

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops | Tassel and Loop | Part 1

Sankakusui-Koma | Japanese Tops |  Tassel and Loop | Part 1



For this first part of the Sankakusui-Koma tutorial, we will make the tassel with Winter, a Special Twist Anaito 100% Silk Thread. It is a 3-ply twist of these 3 colors: KNK-800, KNK-075 and KNK-White. We will add a solid color of Anaito 100% Silk Thread  KNK-004 for contrast. See the full project description in the previous post

Part 1: The Tassel and Loop

Silk Tassel Tutorial - Step 1 - Tutorial for Japanese Komas/Tops

1. If you have a thread dispenser for the spools, use it. Note: If you use solid colors on cards, either iron out the creases or wash them away at step 7. 


Silk Tassel Tutorial - Step 1 - Tutorial for Japanese Komas/Tops

2. Fold a 6 inches (15 cm) piece of card stock in 1/2 and wrap it with the silk thread 45 to 60 times depending on how thick you want your tassel to be.


Silk Tassel Tutorial - Step 1 - Tutorial for Japanese Komas/Tops

3. With a 12 inch (31 cm) piece of thread and a tapestry needle, go around the thread bundle at the folded side of the card stock. This will be the tassel suspension cord. Use a stronger bonded nylon cord for this part if desired.


Silk Tassel Tutorial - Step 1 - Tutorial for Japanese Komas/Tops

4. Tie the 2 thread ends together making sure the bundle is highly help. Use a flat knot, aka square knot reef knot, or common knot, right over left, and left over right. Look at how to tie this knot here if you forgot how. Make sure to tighten the first part of the knot before tightening the second half. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial - Step 1 - Tutorial for Japanese Komas/Tops
5. Cut the thread at the opposite side of card stock with sharp scissors. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
6. Choose the color for the neck wrap. Cut an 18 inch (40 cm) length.

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
7. Wet the tassel under running water. This is especially important if you work with Anaito Silk on cards as creases leftover from being wrapped around the cards need to be washed out or ironed out ahead of time. 
 
Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
8. Wrap the tassel with a piece of clear plastic and secure it with rubber bands. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
9. Pull plastic wrap down to make space for the tassel head and neck. Start the wrap by securing one end of the new thread under the elastic band. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
10. Fold it back into a loop. Hold it right at edge of the plastic wrap.

 Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
11. Wrap around at edge of plastic wrap, pull through loop, and tighten. Repeat wrap and half hitch. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
12. Continue with wraps. End last 2 wraps with half hitches.

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
13. Put end of thread through the loop. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
14. Pull on thread by plastic wrap. It will pull the end on the right. Once it is right at center, and all the loose ends are tucked in, cut the 2 thread ends. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops
15. Bring the plastic wrap up, and cut the ends of the tassel skirt with sharp scissors. I like to use larger scissor for this task. 

Silk Tassel Tutorial  - Tutorial for Japanese Sankakusui-Komas/Tops

The tassel is now completed. Its anatomy comprises of the suspension cord, the head, the wrapped neck, and the tassel skirt. 

16. For the loop, just take a piece of Chinese Knotting Cord Size E for this project or a larger size for larger komas. Fold it in half and tie it with an overhand knot. It makes a loop. 

Sankakusui-Koma - Traditional Japanese Thread Craft Ornamental Top Tutorial

 

Sankakusui-Koma Free Tutorial for an Origami and Traditional Japanese Thread Decorated Top aka Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari, or Dragonboat and Berlingot

This is a free tutorial on making Japanese ornamental tops known as Sankakusui-Koma, Sankaku-Koma, Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari in Japan, Dragonboat in China, or Berlingot in France. 

In Japan these ornaments symbolize good luck and best wishes. I think they will make perfect small gifts or additions to my gift and gift wrapping this year.

As new special dyes and twists Anaito silk just came in, when I was in the middle of designing this new tutorial for these precious ornaments, I decided to play around with the new colors and they are featured here. I also did some in traditional Christmas colors. See photo below. 

Sankakusui-Koma Free Tutorial for an Origami and Traditional Japanese Thread Decorated Top aka Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari, or Dragonboat and Berlingot

Special Twists: left - Summer (Red, Blue and White Mix) with Solid KNK Anaito Color #11
Center - Winter (Grey, Navy, White Mix) with Solid KNK Anaito Color #4
Right - Autumn (Red, Blue, Yellow Mix) with Solid KNK Anaito Color #5

These komas are made by folding rectangular pieces of cardboard into a triangular by-pyramids and covering them by wrapping thread around the 3 dimensional shape. This involves a bit of origami, traditional Japanese thread craft, and just for fun an added tassel. 

This tutorial is separated in sections:

Japanese Terms
Koma = Top
Sankaku = Triangle
Sankakusui = Triangular Bi-Pyramid
Hishi = Diamond
Kazari = Decoration
Anaito = Buttonhole Twist

Sankakusui-Koma Free Tutorial for an Origami and Traditional Japanese Thread Decorated Top aka Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari, or Dragonboat and Berlingot

Special Dyes: left - Vivid (Dark Mix) with Solid KNK Anaito Color #85
Middle Left - Pastel (Light Mix) with Solid KNK Anaito Color #17
Middle Right - Hydrangea (Mix) with Solid KNK Anaito Color #11
Right - Maple (Mix) with Solid KNK Anaito Color #5


Here is what you need:

- Cardboard Koma Form (ready made medium size for this tutorial) or make your own
- Extra card stock, plastic bag, rubber bands
Permanent archival double stick tape (Scotch Brand)
- Scissors
- Tapestry Needle (Size 20 to 24)
- Glue, any super glue, or tacky glue will work

Optional - Permanent Markers, Metallic Thread, Temari 100% Silk Thread or other thread, Beads

Sankakusui-Koma Free Tutorial for an Origami and Traditional Japanese Thread Decorated Top aka Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari, or Dragonboat and Berlingot



A Koma Material Bag with all 7 Special Twist and Dye Colors,
6 Solid Anaito Silk Cards, 24 Koma Forms ready to fold,
Chinese Knotting Cord for the loops, 
plus a couple of 6 mm beads is available HERE

Sankakusui-Koma Free Tutorial for an Origami and Traditional Japanese Thread Decorated Top aka Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari, or Dragonboat and Berlingot


Or get all the materials separately... 



Sankakusui-Koma Free Tutorial for an Origami and Traditional Japanese Thread Decorated Top aka Hishi-Koma, Hishi-Kazari, or Dragonboat and Berlingot


Or get Anaito Silk Colors in Green and Red, and Twisted Metallic Cord, 0.1mm for the wrapping and the 0.4 mm for the loops

The following tutorial was written after making many tops and refining the technique. Even the sequences of steps was changed along the way. Following the instructions step by step will make this project easy and the result will be worth the effort.