Tutorial: Shirred Tissue Paper Christmas Crackers

What would Christmas lunch be without the paper hats, corny jokes & plastic nail clippers from our Christmas Crackers, or Bon Bons as we call them here in Australia?
Here is a quick, easy tutorial to make your own which are perfect for personalising for your guests.

 You don't normally associate shirring with tissue paper, but hey there's no rules right?
To be honest, I wasn't sure it would even work until I tried it!
But it did and I'm really pleased with the result.
  • What you will need:
    • Cardboard rolls for your inserts.  I purchased mine in a pack of six from the craft shop ($5)
    • Snap strips (the thing that goes bang!).  Again you can purchase these in packs.
    • Tissue paper
    • Double sided tape
    • Shirring elastic & thread
    • A paper party hat, corny joke (see below for link) and a trinket - all completely optional of course!
  •  The size of the paper will depend on your Snap strip size.  Measure approx 2cm extra both ends to get your length.
  • Be generous with the width as the shirring will shrink it.
  • My measurements were 32cm long by 25 cm wide. Tissue paper is double ply - any thicker and it won't shirr as much
  • Load your machine as you would normally for shirring - some links are below
  • Measure & mark 6cm from the top and bottom of your paper length and mark the middle.
  • Sew across the width of your paper starting at the 6cm mark - 3 rows. You do not need to back sew or tie off. Do not stretch out the paper in the 2nd & 3rd row while stitching
  • Turn paper around and do another 3 at the bottom again starting at the 6cm mark
  • Sew one row across the middle at your mark
  • Trim back all threads
  • Add all your bits and pieces into the cardboard roll
  • Apply a piece of double sided tape to the length of the cardboard roll and gently press close
  • Add another piece of tape at both ends but a little further in so it overlaps
  •  Add the snap strip and with your fingers just scrunch closed the two shirred ends
Now for some useful links:
Here is a great website with a good selection of family friendly Christmas cracker jokes 
One of my early tutorials for shirring


A Spoonful Of Sugar said...

What a great way to make a cracker, plus practice your shirring at the same time!

Hampers Delivery said...

This look great and not too tricky to make either...thanks for the tutorial!