DIY vs Buy – Tassel Garland

A major part of being an effective event planner or even dinner host (dinner is an event too!) is to have a good sense of time management. Without it, we over estimate what we can accomplish and underestimate how long things actually take. One area where I see enthusiastic first-timers get themselves into trouble is when in comes to DIY’ing event decor.  We get flooded with inspiration from Pinterest but nobody tells us how much work really goes into those handmade decorations. And an even bigger secret, you don’t have to work your fingers to the bone to achieve a crafty look. Understanding all your options can mean the difference between coming into an event relaxed and ready to enjoy or stressed and working down to the wire. The best events have a healthy mix of DIY’d, semi-DIY and store bought elements. Let’s talk about our options for tassel garland:


DIY (Free, maybe?)

DIY Tassel Garland | Inspired by Charm

Photo via Inspired By Charm

Tutorials for DIY tassel garlands can be found all over the internet, I like this one from Inspired By Charm.  In a bind you could make them out of things you probably have around the house but with a little planning you could make them pretty spectacular. You’ll need tissue paper, scissors, decorative tape, string or twine.

+ The advantage of making these yourself is that the materials are pretty inexpensive and easy to come by. For a very minimal investment you could make hundreds and customize everything from the color of the tissue paper to the length of the garland

– The downside, these are time consuming and there really are no shortcuts. It’s only about a five-step process but a few of those steps are extensive. Depending on how many you will need you may be at it a while.

Pro Tip: Ask for help. For Lou’s party I enlisted the help of a crafty little cousin who was able to bang out more than enough in a few hours.

DIY/ BUY (~$9.00 for 20) 

50940257 (1).jpg

Photo via

Not sure you want to dedicate hours to creating tassel garland, but also not ready to make a large investment? There’s a solution for you! Increasingly, semi-DIY options are becoming available at stores like Target, Walmart and Michael’s.

+ Depending on your price point you can cut out a little to a lot of the leg work by purchasing semi-DIY kits. Some kits require assembling pre-cut tassels while others only need to be strung. Pay attention to reviews to get the best idea of what kind of kit you are purchasing. Also, available at online retailers with lots of color/ color combo options.

–  What is sacrificed in this option is quality and customization.  Most kits include a low- quality tissue paper (not a big deal) but mostly the downside comes in having to choose from stock on hand. Depending on the time of year and the store you may run into limited availability and only basic colors. Minimal options for metallics or multi-colored garlands. When purchasing online don’t forget to leave plenty of time for delivery and then assembly.

Pro Tip: Don’t forget to use  your discount coupons at Michael’s or other craft stores and additional 5% at Target with RedCard.

BUY (~$16.50 for 20)


Photo via @bonjourfete

There are a lot of scenarios where completely outsources your DIY makes sense. Luckily, there are a lot of options here too. A quick search on Etsy  will yield many options. Locally, Bonjour Fete, a party boutique with all the cutest, extra-special party supplies actually has a tassel bar with tons of options for customization.

+ Outsourcing these handmade beauties will save you lots of time and allow you to focus on the elements of the event that only you can handle. A professional crafter will work with you to offer creative ideas for bringing your theme to life.

– While this option will leave you free to focus on the other details of the event, your budget will suffer. The mark up on truly handmade items is significant. It’s not for nothing though, these things are time consuming.

Pro Tip: Do your research. If you’re going to trust someone with this task make sure they are going to deliver. Check out their social media and reviews to get a sense of their customer service.

There is a time and place for each of these options. When considering which route to go think about budget, timeline and theme. If you are looking to have a heavy tassel appearance at your event, I would consider  making them yourself. If you have a basic color scheme and just need a few strands to add flair here and there purchasing some semi-DIY kits would be perfect. If you have a theme that demands something extra-special to compliment it have a professional help you. Either way you can’t go wrong. Bonus — tassels aren’t going out of style anytime soon, don’t forget to store them carefully after your event because these are great to reuse for future events!

Do you DIY or BUY? Comment with pics of your festive tassels!







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