Ball Fringe – Order in a Chaotic World

I’m not sure what it is about ball fringe, but I love it. Okay, I’m obsessed with it. Every time I go into the fabric store, I have to swing through the trim section to look at it. My brain swirls with ideas that justify why I need to buy some. Sure, it comes in different colors, but the ball fringe of my youth has become so much more. You can buy anything from pea-sized to golf ball fringe these days. And it’s gotten more sophisticated – jeweled, spangled, and sparkly. All pretty, but I like the traditional, fuzzy, walnut-size best.


Photo Courtesy: Etsy


I was at another fabric store a year or so ago and bought 23 yards of it. Why? Because I wanted needed it, it was on sale, and there was 23 yards left on the bolt. And, yes, I did use some of those 23 yards to edge the paisley-print pillow, and then I found some black to go on the travel-fabric pillow.


To be fair, I DO use other kinds of trim – fringes and tassels, but they don’t warm my heart like ball fringe does. Sorry. So, what is it about me and ball fringe? Is there some deep, psychological meaning behind my obsession? I decided to explore the possibility.


Photo Courtesy:  Ebay


Ball fringe is orderly and predictable, something my structure-loving personality likes. In a world of chaos and insecurity, ball fringe is something you can count on. Those fuzzy little spheres will stay in place, get along with their neighbors on either side, and will happily adorn whatever it is I have in mind. No arguments, no struggles, just happy, bobbing beauty.

Ball fringe is flexible. Creativity and movement in structure – even better. There’s that little “sidewalk” where you stitch it in place, and the pom-poms (some sites call it pom-pom fringe) are anchored to the sidewalk. So they’re not going anywhere, but they can swing freely in their assigned spot. They’re like frosting on a cake. After the cutting, sewing (perhaps ripping and re-sewing), and the rest of the general construction, they’re ready and willing to give my project that final flourish.


It’s soft, and when I hold those fuzzy spheres against my cheek, something wonderful happens in the tactile part of my brain. Perhaps I had something trimmed in ball fringe when I was a baby. If I did, I don’t remember. I do know that I’m a creative person who loves structure and predictability within the realm of creative expression. There’s something warm, secure, and loving for me in ball fringe. And when it comes to an aisle full of rick-rack, ribbon, and lace, ball fringe beats them all, hands down.


Photo Courtesy:  Sew4Home




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