Laws of Physics and Fashion: Yo-Yos Do Come Back

 "We must never confuse elegance with snobbery." -- Yves Saint Laurent


 Yo-yo quilting is a humble craft -- developed by creative Depression-era homemakers to use up bits of fabric for practical objects -- usually quilts and coverlets. (The top photo is a good example of this kind of quilting.) The product is homey, sensible and, in the right hands, can have a wonderful sense of design and movement.


Recently, yo-yo quilting has begun to pop up on runways around the world (see middle photo). Again, in the hands of a knowledgeable designer, the humble yo-yo can be elevated to haute couture. 


Somewhere in between common sense frugality and high fashion theatricality are these statement necklaces made from hand sewn yo-yos (bottom photos). Trish Tilly has created several inspiring necklaces for an upcoming workshop for Fresh City Life. I asked her what she thought of the revival of yo-yo quilting and she replied, "I wasn't convinced about it until I started making them for myself. Then it quickly became addicting to explore different color schemes and play with the positive and negative space that is created through placement of the yo-yos. I'm having a ball!" 

This historic craft is back and trending now.

Written by Chris on May 3, 2011


trish on May 3, 2011


I'm also looking into recycling some vintage fabrics and clothes into yoyos. My goal is a tablecloth. We'll see how far I make it. It might end up as a bellpull by the fireplace.


That is an excellent "repurposing" idea for vintage and designer clothes that are ready to be retired. Trish, what about a tree skirt or holiday table runner?

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