What do you do with that little wad of yarn left over from your last knitting project? I tend to wind them tight and tuck them away in a jar. This time, though, I only had six yards left! Hardly enough to warrant hoarding against the chance I might need 6 teeny yards of bright red yarn. But… that’s just enough to make a nice little pom pom for something (just what that something will be hasn’t been decided… that’s a whole other conundrum).
The Steps Steps Steps
All you need for this project is a scrap of cardboard from your recycling (mine cut from an old pasta box), your yarn, some scissors and a pen.
First, you need to make your pompom form. Mine are about 3 inches in diameter and traced from the bottom of a juice glass from the cupboard. Cut two. Then you cut a smaller circle out of the middle of each piece, creating a sort of doughnut shapes. The width of cardboard left from the center hole to the outer edge will determine how long the fringes are on your pompom. The longer the distance, the longer your fringe will be so keep that in mind when you cut yours out.
Now, here’s a little trick I learned after a few sessions of pom craziness. I cut a wedge shape out of one side of both “doughnuts”, creating a pac man mouth. This makes wrapping the yarn around so much easier. If you don’t cut that wedge out, you wind up having to squeeze the ball of yarn through the center hold every time which can become a bit mind-numbing.
Take your wee stash of yarn and cut a 5 inch piece off and set it aside(you’ll use this to tie everything together at the end and it’s worth making sure you have enough left over before you get too carried away winding). Now, take the two forms together so that they overlap.
Take the yarn for the pompom and begin to wind one layer evenly around the form starting at one side of the wedge and ending at the other. Continue wrapping from one end to the other until the form is covered and you’re out of yarn. Scrunch all of the yarn together so that it forms a thick, even layer.
Next, find the gap between the two layers of cardboard. Slip your scissors into this gap and start cutting the loops of yarn around the outer edge of the pompom (note: DO NOT cut the yarn around the middle of the form… make sure you only cut around the outer edge).
Once you’ve cut all of the loops around the outer edge of your form you’re ready to slip the short length of yarn you cut earlier around the middle of your poof. Slip the five inch length between the two pieces of cardboard so that all the short lengths of yarn are being held the loop created by your short piece.
Tie two firm knots in the length of yarn, making sure to really cinch all the little bits together tightly (this will be the only thing holding your pompom together!). Remove the cardboard and fluff the pompom into a sphere without tugging too hard on the short pieces. Just fluff, mind you.
Now, the fun part. Your fringe will be a wee bit uneven, now you get to even everything out and give it a little haircut! Take your scissors and trim off the stragglers without cutting off the two strands you used to tie everything together (I keep those on so that I can use them to sew the pompom to whatever strikes my fancy later on down the road).