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How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn 3 Ways

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Learn how to make pom poms from yarn with consistent, beautiful results using 3 different methods! If you loved this, learn how to make tulle pom poms too! This post contains affiliate links.


Pom pom making is an interesting thing. On the one hand, it’s stupid simple: wrap yarn, tie it up, cut the loops.

On the other hand, it’s challenging to get just right. Using the method above, you’re likely to get floppy results if you don’t do it strategically.

Table of Contents:

A few months ago, I shared how to make a pom pom with a fork.

But this is just one method in my arsenal for how to make pom poms from yarn come out fabulous.

There are a few tricks to getting your pom poms perfect:

  • Choosing the right yarn
  • Using the right tools
  • Wrapping enough
  • Trimming it right.

Today I’m sharing with you how to make pom poms from yarn using a few different tools (including your fingers!) I also share tips and tricks for getting it to look fabulous.

Best yarn for pom poms

The first trick for making better pom poms: use the right yarn!

For a full, fluffy hat pom pom, a thick yarn, such as those made for finger knitting, gives you fabulous results. It almost looks like fur pom poms!

Classic Super Saver yarn also makes decent pom poms. If you go too cheap and thin, you’ll find your pom poms getting sparser. This is the yarn I recommend for general crafts and kids’ crafts.

However, by using a pom pom maker to make your pom poms, you can get pretty legit results even using Super Saver yarn.

Yarns with some texture, such as Lion Brand Homespun are fabulous for winter accessories too.

Pom Pom Maker vs. Hands

Should you learn how to make pom poms from yarn using a pom pom maker? Is it worth having in your crafting arsenal?

Pom pom makers come in different shapes and sizes and definitely aren’t a must for making pom poms. However, the circular style in particular (as opposed to semi-circle pom pom makers) can help you get fabulous pom poms even from thinner yarns.

A pom pom maker gets you more consistent sizes as well, and many of them have on them measurements for the target size of your pom pom.

The learning curve of making pom poms with a pom pom maker is often a deterrent, however, it shouldn’t be! Learn once and you’ll be floored at how simple and gorgeous pom pom making has become.

And you can even make your own pom pom maker out of cardboard! The simple wooden pom pom maker that I used is often created as a DIY. Personally, I like to have it ready made in my craft room. It keeps the sizing consistent and it’s much sturdier.

It’s a really simple tool, and since it’s made out of wood, it’ll last a while. Your cardboard pom pom maker will be weaker and may not get you the same results. You’ll probably need to remake it after a few pom poms, adding extra steps to your project. DIY pom pom makers are a good idea for one-time needs or if you’re in a fix and need something now.

To make your own pom pom maker, simply mimic the shape of the wood one in these photos.

3 Ways to Make Pom Poms from Yarn

The tutorials below can be mixed and matched. On each one, I shared the process using the yarn type and exact method that I used. However, if you choose to mix up a yarn type with a different method, you’ll also want to adapt it and finish it off accordingly.

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using your hands

The hands method is the least consistent and the simplest. Using thick yarn for this one ensures a fuller pom pom, since you don’t have the advantage of the circular shape of the pom pom maker.

You need

Process

1. Cut a piece of yarn about a foot long. Center the yarn between your ring and middle fingers, as low as you can get it.

2. Start wrapping. Keep your wrap in a higher position on your fingers than the first bit of yarn that you threaded between two fingers. Make sure to keep that first yarn separate, below the knuckles. Don’t wrap too tightly. I wrapped about ten times using the chunky yarn, but thinner yarns will require more like 30-60 wraps. Use your judgement.

3. When you have wrapped enough, take the yarn from step 1. Pull it out over the wrapped yarn, splitting it into two. (You can use your other hand to do this – I just needed to hold it in place for the photo!). Tie it around once if you can.

4. Gently wiggle the wrapped yarn off your hand, keeping the center yarn in place to hold your bundle together. Tie it and double knot as tightly as you can.

5. Cut the loops.

6. When you’re done, fluff it out to make it into a circle. If you have a comb handy, you can comb it out to separate the fibers into a furrier pom pom.

7. Trim your yarn pom pom. Isn’t she a beauty?!

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using a Cardboard (or wood) Pom Pom Maker

I used a purchased (wood) pom pom maker to do this. You can make your own from cardboard. Simply cut out two discs from cardboard roughly the size you want your pom pom to be. On each disc, draw a smaller circle in the center. Draw a triangle from the center of your disc, getting larger at the outer circle.

Erase the portion of the triangle that is inside the smaller circle and cut out the keyhole shape that you’re left with.

You don’t need that bonus hole – personally, I don’t even know what it’s for!

You need

Process

1. Hold two identical discs together. Start by placing the end of your yarn at the outer end of the disc, going toward the inside of the pom pom maker.

2. Start wrapping around the two discs.

Keep wrapping until your center is basically filling up too much to continue for a good, full pom pom.

3. Trim your yarn from the skein.

4. At the point between the two discs, start cutting your yarn, string by string. Using smaller thread scissors for this will help you get in where you need to.

Make sure to hold your pom pom so that the yarns stay inside the pom pom maker! The shape is designed to hold those yarns in place until you’re all tied up. But if it’s not full enough, you’ll lose some. You may also see some outer yarns running away even if you are full enough.

Continue cutting until every last loop is done for.

5. Flip your pom pom so that the keyhole opening is facing up. Cut a piece of thread a few inches wider than your pom pom. Slide it down through the two discs, all the way up to your strings.

6. Flip your pom pom back over, and pull the string around through the whole groove between the two discs.

7. Tie it as tightly as you can and trim up to the edge of the discs (so that these flow with the rest of the pom pom shape.

8. Gently pry apart the discs while pulling the pom pom through the keyhole. Your pom pom is complete! You will need to do minimal trimming to get the pom pom to be perfect.

This is by far my favorite method for how to make pom poms from yarn!

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using a Plastic Pom Pom Maker

This more commercially available pom pom maker makes half circle pom poms. They are so insanely easy to use and are great for quick projects.

You need

Process

1. Start by placing your pom pom maker horizontally on your surface. Your handle is to the left and the rounded side is to the right. Slide the end of your thread through the groove on the right from front to back. Bring it behind the right of the semicircle around to the front through the center hole, and then in front of the handle. Wedge it into the left groove on the handle back to the back of the pom pom maker.

2. Bring it around the back of the handle, back to the front of the pom pom maker through the center hole. Bring it up in the direction of the sunburst shape marks on the semicircle to start your wrapping.

3. Start wrapping. You can use that sunburst pattern to help you along but don’t worry about it too much.

Wrap generously, keeping it more or less evenly placed around your semicircle. I recommend wrapping until the center hole is filled.

4. Flip your pom pom maker over so that the handle is on the right and the starting groove is on the left.

5. Snip the starting thread at that handle point.

6. Give a very gentle tug to see which string from the other side goes along with it. Those two strings are your tying strings. Tie very tightly and double knot in the center.

7. Cut every thread through the groove between the two sides.

When you’re done, just roll your pom pom into a circular shape, trim any rebellious threads, and your’e done!

I hope you’ve had fun learning how to make pom poms from yarn! Do you have a favorite method? Comment below!

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn 3 Ways

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn 3 Ways

Materials

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using your hands

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using a Cardboard (or wood) Pom Pom Maker

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using a Plastic Pom Pom Maker

Instructions

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using your hands

The hands method is the least consistent and the simplest. Using thick yarn for this one ensures a fuller pom pom, since you don't have the advantage of the circular shape of the pom pom maker.

1. Cut a piece of yarn about a foot long. Center the yarn between your ring and middle fingers, as low as you can get it.

2. Start wrapping. Keep your wrap in a higher position on your fingers than the first bit of yarn that you threaded between two fingers. Make sure to keep that first yarn separate, below the knuckles. Don't wrap too tightly. I wrapped about ten times using the chunky yarn, but thinner yarns will require more like 30-60 wraps. Use your judgement.

3. When you have wrapped enough, take the yarn from step 1. Pull it out over the wrapped yarn, splitting it into two. (You can use your other hand to do this - I just needed to hold it in place for the photo!). Tie it around once if you can.

4. Gently wiggle the wrapped yarn off your hand, keeping the center yarn in place to hold your bundle together. Tie it and double knot as tightly as you can.

5. Cut the loops.

6. When you're done, fluff it out to make it into a circle. If you have a comb handy, you can comb it out to separate the fibers into a furrier pom pom.

7. Trim your yarn pom pom. Isn't she a beauty?!

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using a Cardboard (or wood) Pom Pom Maker

I used a purchased (wood) pom pom maker to do this. You can make your own from cardboard. Simply cut out two discs from cardboard roughly the size you want your pom pom to be. On each disc, draw a smaller circle in the center. Draw a triangle from the center of your disc, getting larger at the outer circle.

Erase the portion of the triangle that is inside the smaller circle and cut out the keyhole shape that you're left with.

You don't need that bonus hole - personally, I don't even know what it's for!

1. Hold two identical discs together. Start by placing the end of your yarn at the outer end of the disc, going toward the inside of the pom pom maker.

2. Start wrapping around the two discs.

Keep wrapping until your center is basically filling up too much to continue for a good, full pom pom.

3. Trim your yarn from the skein.

4. At the point between the two discs, start cutting your yarn, string by string. Using smaller thread scissors for this will help you get in where you need to.

Make sure to hold your pom pom so that the yarns stay inside the pom pom maker! The shape is designed to hold those yarns in place until you're all tied up. But if it's not full enough, you'll lose some. You may also see some outer yarns running away even if you are full enough.

Continue cutting until every last loop is done for.

5. Flip your pom pom so that the keyhole opening is facing up. Cut a piece of thread a few inches wider than your pom pom. Slide it down through the two discs, all the way up to your strings.

6. Flip your pom pom back over, and pull the string around through the whole groove between the two discs.

7. Tie it as tightly as you can and trim up to the edge of the discs (so that these flow with the rest of the pom pom shape.

8. Gently pry apart the discs while pulling the pom pom through the keyhole. Your pom pom is complete! You will need to do minimal trimming to get the pom pom to be perfect.

This is by far my favorite method for how to make pom poms from yarn!

How to Make Pom Poms from Yarn using a Plastic Pom Pom Maker

This more commercially available pom pom maker makes half circle pom poms. They are so insanely easy to use and are great for quick projects.

1. Start by placing your pom pom maker horizontally on your surface. Your handle is to the left and the rounded side is to the right. Slide the end of your thread through the groove on the right from front to back. Bring it behind the right of the semicircle around to the front through the center hole, and then in front of the handle. Wedge it into the left groove on the handle back to the back of the pom pom maker.

2. Bring it around the back of the handle, back to the front of the pom pom maker through the center hole. Bring it up in the direction of the sunburst shape marks on the semicircle to start your wrapping.

3. Start wrapping. You can use that sunburst pattern to help you along but don't worry about it too much.

Wrap generously, keeping it more or less evenly placed around your semicircle. I recommend wrapping until the center hole is filled.

4. Flip your pom pom maker over so that the handle is on the right and the starting groove is on the left.

5. Snip the starting thread at that handle point.

6. Give a very gentle tug to see which string from the other side goes along with it. Those two strings are your tying strings. Tie very tightly and double knot in the center.

7. Cut every thread through the groove between the two sides.

When you're done, just roll your pom pom into a circular shape, trim any rebellious threads, and your'e done!

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

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Caroline Bradley

Thursday 27th of October 2022

Just thought you would like to know the English way of making a Pom pom, as it is slightly different to your way. (Never been taught a 'Hand' method, not sure if that is used here or not.) Our basic method is the same as your Pom pom maker but the main difference is that we use two complete circles, with holes in the centre. This is the way that most children are taught, cutting out their own cardboard circles. We place the two circles together and wrap yarn around them, through the centre hole. The idea is to completely cover the circles until the central hole is full. Then we start snipping through the layers until we reach the cardboard. A separate 'tying' thread is then slipped between the two pieces of card. We continue cutting through the layers, feeding the tying thread between the card as we go. Once all of the layers have been cut through the tying thread is tied in a knot, as tightly as possible, and the two circles of card are gently pulled off the Pom pom. We then finish as you do. Our commercial Pom Pom makers are designed to be used in the same way. I find it fascinating the way different countries, or cultures, develop different ways of producing the same item and thought, for that reason, you would be interested to hear about the English method of Pom pom making.

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