Two ways of making woolly pompoms

When I was younger and a family member or friend was expecting a baby, my Mum would encourage me and my brother to make pompoms for the new baby. So it seemed only right that I would make a few for my own twins who are due any day!

Woolly pompoms galore

I have found 2 ways of making pompoms, which I will call the ‘traditional’ way and the ‘quick’ way. Let’s start with the traditional way.

For this you will need:

  • Wool (any type, in 1 or more colours)
  • Card (I used a piece of a cardboard box)
  • Scissors

Cut out two circles the same size from the card. The circles should be roughly the same diameter as you want your finished pompoms to be. Now cut smaller circles from the centre of your circles so that you have two rings. I made two sizes of pompoms: for the larger ones I made the circles 7cm in diameter with a 2.8cm hole, and for the smaller ones I made the circles 5cm in diameter with a 2cm hole.

T1 card rings and spools

Cut your wool into manageable lengths and wrap into spools (pictured above). I found that 3-4 arm lengths of wool per spool was about right.

Put your two card rings together and start wrapping the wool round. It is best if you start with the free end at the outside edge so that it matches where the rest of the pompom ends will be.

T2 starting off

T3 threading the wool

T4 winding the wool tightly

When you are wrapping, pull the wool fairly tight. Keep wrapping until you have finished your little spool of wool. Trim the free end so that it finishes at the outside edge of your card ring.

T5 one spool completed

Start the next spool of wool next to where you left off. Depending on how you want your finished pompom to look, you may want to choose a different colour for the next spool. I used 4 colours of wool in this pattern, and made each one go about one-fifth of the way round the card ring.

T6 one layer completed

Once you’ve gone all the way round the card ring once, start another layer on top of the previous one. I decided to stagger my colours so that the pompom would have random patches of colour.

T7 second layer

Keep going until the hole in the middle of the ring becomes very small!

T8 winding completed

Now for the fun part! Using your scissors, cut around the end of your ring. Once you have cut through all the layers in one place, you can slot the scissors between the two pieces of card to make sure that you are cutting in the centre.

T9 cutting the wool

Go all the way round. Your pompom should look like this.

T10 after cutting

Take another length of wool and slot it between the two pieces of card. This piece of wool will also double as a hanging loop, so make it twice as long as you want your hanging loop to be. Wrap it around the entire pompom and pull tight. Now tie a knot, as tightly as you can. This will hold your pompom together so it needs to be pretty tight! I made mine a triple knot, just to be on the safe side.

T11 tying the knot

Now, cut off the card rings.

T12 cutting the card off

And here is your pompom! You might need to trim the wool a little to make your pompom nice and round with no ends sticking out.

T13 finished pompom

Just a little tip: the tighter you pull your wool when you are wrapping it, the denser your pompom will be. The pompom on the left was wrapped fairly loosely, whereas the pompom on the right was wrapped much tighter!

Patchy pompoms

You can adjust the design of your pompom, depending on the pattern in which you wrap your colours of wool. For the pompom on the left below, I made stripes by making each layer of wool a different colour. For the pompom on the right, I made segments by wrapping each quarter of the ring in the same colour all the way through the layers.

Pompom patterns

However, I have nothing on Mr Printables. His pompoms are amazing! He has blogged tutorials on how to create flowers, letters, and even animals in his pompoms! I’d recommend that you have a look. I’m thinking about trying the letters, and doing one with the initial of each baby in. But I can’t do that until after they’re born, otherwise you might guess what the names will be and we’re keeping them secret!

Ok, now for the quick method. You can only really use this for one colour pompoms. I have adapted this method from one that I found here, which describes how to make a mini pompom using a fork. I wanted my pompom to be a little bigger, so I used my hand!

Wrap your wool multiple times around three fingers until you have quite a fat wool ring. The more times you wrap, the denser your pompom will be.

Q1 winding wool around fingers

Transfer your wool ring to two fingers on your other hand. Take another length of wool and thread it between your fingers and around the middle of your wool ring.

Q2 threading the central length

Pull the wool length tight and tie a knot (you might want to take the wool off your fingers first).

Q3 tying the knot

Cut through the loops on each side of the knot.

Q4 cutting the wool

Your pompom will probably look like this. It’s pretty rough and ready!

Q5 rough and reading pompom

Time to start trimming…

Q6 trimming the pompom

Feel free to be pretty brutal with your trimming, until you have a roughly round and even pompom with as few ends sticking out as possible.

Q7 finished pompom

So there you have it, two ways to make pompoms. Do let me know if you have a go yourself, and especially if you try to make a specific design in yours. I’d love to see them!

Thanks for reading!

Rachel

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3 thoughts on “Two ways of making woolly pompoms

  1. Pingback: Easy home-made baby toys | the Little Koo blog

  2. Pingback: The Little Koo blog turns 3! | the Little Koo blog

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