Making rosettes or “Yo-Yo” . A pair of very sharp scissors, a round shape like a can or CD disc to make your template. Trace out circles on fabric. Fold over/hem at the edge and make neat tiny running stitch to the entire edge. Gentle pull the thread to form gathers. You should get a round rosette. To the Chinese, you will think they look like Cha Siew Bao or Chinese roast buns.
When you have enough discs, join them side by side to get strips and lastly join the strips so each disc is attached at four ends.
I added a pair of reading glasses. When you reach half a century, you need glasses to make neat dainty stitches.
I have been wanting to make these discs since Christmas. My colleague wore this top to our Christmas function. At the collar of her top, were these disc. It brought me back to my childhood. Known in USA as yo-yo quilting or Japanese Fabric embroidery.
I dedicate this post to my domestic Science teacher Miss Ada Mamora.( The woman in the photo, taken with my British teacher Mr. Johnson during my 28th reunion of our fifth formers in 1999. )It was 26 year since I saw my teachers as I finished my form 6 in Methodist school in Sibu.
Miss Mamora taught me domestic science when I was 13. She taught me to make things made by hand. We did fabric dying, cross stitch and others I couldn't name or forgotten. She didn't teach me the above Japanese fabric embroidery. She taught my older sister, and I learn it from her. My sister made a clown in school. In 1985 I made one for my first baby who is now my 27th year old daughter. It was one of it's kind and I was very proud of it. I had friends from all over the world and they had never seen something like that.
Going back to my colleague's top, I told her, I know how to make the discs. She was surprised because she had never heard anyone making them. Earlier this year, a student was wearing a dress with a few of these on the front of her dress. I was more determined to make it as I couldn't explain to my friends from Germany, England and Fiji.
I asked my second daughter if she like a quilt made with these discs, since I had made a quilt for big daughter, and a cross stitch picture for my son. It doesn't take a lot of time to make one disc, but it takes very meticulous and nimble fingers to make them, I will let you know if I do finish the quilt. You need to make thousands and thousands of these discs. So I am not very hopeful. Yo-yo quilts were very popular in the 1930′s and 1940′s.
If you have made something with these discs, I shall love to hear from you.