Saturday, February 4, 2012

Tiki Tacky no more

Do you remember these? If you were a product of the 1960's/1970's-I am sure somewhere in your repressed  faded memories there was a relative, friend or neighbor that had these hanging on their kitchen wall.

My daughter  desperately wanted a set of these for Christmas. SPECIFICALLY, she wanted THE set (or an identical set) to what her Mammaw and Pappaw T. used to have. Unfortunately, I couldn't replicate those no matter where I searched. But I came close when I found a pair on Ebay that are 32 inches tall. Yes--almost 3 feet tall! That sure is a whole lotta fork and spoon. Of course, I found the ginormous pair after  these were already purchased at a thrift store (which are about 18 inches in height). Hmmm, what to do, what to do.

Not trying to harsh anyone's mellow but the Tiki thing? So NOT my style. I really like the wooden utensil thing though. It's kinda kitschy. Quirky. Like me.  I had alluded to to using jute twine for craft in a previous post, so here we go!

Here are the supplies needed--
Also needle and thread and duh -giant fork and spoon
Do NOT waste your money buying twine from Michael's- they charge $6.99 for about 120 feet. (At least that is all that was available at my local store). Go to Lowes, Home Depot or Tractor Supply where  you can purchase 190-250 feet of jute for $2.99. Hobby Lobby has 400 feet normally priced at $6.99, but with coupon or sale you can buy it for as cheap as $3.99.

The first thing I did was very lightly rub the spoon, fork tines and handles with a very fine piece of sandpaper (220 grit).  An emery cloth would probably work as well. I really didn't want to sand to take the finish off and make it perfect.  Just  enough to knock off some of the little bumps (and get rid of 40 years of grime-bleh). Next, I went over them with a little Old English Walnut stain/ polish since I like the dark wood look. (A dark shoe polish would probably work as well. I just used what I had available.)  Paint is always an option if you opt to forgo the wood color.  After everything was dry I began  by wrapping the jute twine over the Tiki portion of the handles.

I wrapped these when I was watching TV because it is BORING!!  Try to make it a tight wrap and neat. If you have little gaps it is ok because you will go over it anyway. Once all the main bumps and divets were wrapped and relatively concealed,  I tried to make the handle appear uniform in size.

Sam-Sam was "helping"
When finished  wrapping the jute, tuck the end into the wrapped section using the tip point of the scissors and then apply a drop of glue to seal it. No worries about it unraveling! I  took a piece of twine that was  approximately 15-18 inches long divided it into 3 equal portions and tied a knot at one end. I then braided the three strands.

When finished with the braid, I knotted the other end, trimmed any frayed pieces and this will become the hanger for the utensil.

I looped the braid through the hole of the utensil's handle, butted the knotted ends together  and then whip stitched the knots together forming a loop. When  I was done sewing, I ran a thin bead of glue around the seam.

The hanger will be strong enough to support the weight of  the utensil.

And here is the way they turned out! I just love it!

Cost breakdown:
Over-sized vintage wooden utensils  $6.99
380 feet of jute twine  $ 5.98
Super Glue $1.00 (I already had this)

It took me maybe 1 1/2 hrs to do everything but I did take breaks between steps. The wrapping of each utensil was probably 20 -30 minutes each. I used ~ 190 feet of  jute on each utensil. For less than $15  I have cool and kitschy wall decor for my kitchen! What do you think?

Shared on Metamorphosis Monday 2/6/12

Shared on  2/07/2012 


  1. What a neat little project. Who would have thought that just wrapping twine would take so long.

  2. @Prarie Cat--You would not believe how sore my hands were from wrapping that darn twine! Not sure if I would do it again, haha. Although I di like how they look now!


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