How to Make Pom Poms with a DIY Cardboard Template

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Do you want to know all the tips and tricks to make the perfect yarn pom pom? Let me share with you what I’ve picked up making many pom poms throughout the years.

Making pom poms is super easy. And once you start, you will quickly find yourself in a huge pile of pom poms! This is a perfect craft to do while binge-watching Netflix.

There are a few ways you can make pom poms. I’ve tried many.

There are special pom pom makers you can buy, or use your fingers or a fork, or even a toilet roll to wrap your yarn around. But my favorite will always be the DIY cardboard pom pom maker.

Making pom poms with cardboard donut-shaped discs is the way I learned it as a kid. It’s the classic way.

The traditional cardboard method gives me perfect round and full pom poms every time.

And with a few pointers, it is also the easiest way to make perfect pom poms!

Two images of hands making a light blue pom pom and holding a finished pom pom. Text on image: Tips and tricks to make perfect pom poms with step by step instructions. thatcraftsite.com

Perfect Pom Pom Tips

Let’s start by giving you a few tips before we start making our pom poms.

  • The perfect pom pom is full and dense. The trick to this is choosing the right yarn. The fluffier and softer the yarn, the more dense and fluffy the pom pom!

  • Use a wool needle and double thread your yarn to wrap twice as fast. Move your needle to the middle of a long piece of yarn. You will wrap with two strands of yarn, doubling your speed and cutting your wrapping time in half!

  • The more yarn you put around your cardboard circles, the fuller and thicker your pom pom will be. If you just wrap all around once or twice, your pom pom will be bare and floppy. The opposite of what you’re going for.

  • Use thick, chunky yarn if you are planning on making very large pom poms.

  • You can use cereal box cardboard to make your pom pom template, but sturdier cardboard is better. And if you want to re-use your cardboard pom pom maker a few times, you might also choose to wrap it with tape to make it last a little longer.

  • Sharp scissors are your friend. I like my little stork embroidery scissors, but any sharp pair will do.

It is hard to say how much yarn you will need to make your pom pom. It all depends on how large a pom pom you are making and how thick your yarn is. How tight you wrap the yarn makes a lot of difference as well.

These DIY pom poms are perfect to use up all your scraps of leftover yarn from your previous yarn crafts! Use all your favorite colors and make a multi-colored rainbow pom pom!

Work in progress shot, hands holding a pom pom template wrapped in light blue yarn. Text on image: How to make a perfect pom pom the classic way. thatcraftsite.com.

When you are done and find yourself surrounded by a pile of pom poms, don’t fret! There are so many fun craft projects you can do with pom poms!

You can use your pom poms to decorate your bag, add them to a yarn wrapped Christmas wreath, make a garland, embellish gift wrap. Or grab some scraps of felt and googly eyes and make pom pom animals.

How to make your pom poms fluffy

How fluffy your pom pom will be, largely depends on the type of yarn you are using. Some acrylic yarns just won’t get that fluffy look that high-quality wool or wool blend yarns will have.

Fluffing up your pom pom basically happens when you trim it. Trimming all the ends will give them that soft and fluffy look. You don’t have to cut off a lot, just the tips is fine. Go round and round with your scissors until you have the look you like.

You can also gently brush your pom poms a bit with a fine-tooth comb or a pet grooming brush. This can give your pom pom an even fuzzier look.

Fluffy handmade pom poms in different shades of blue and pink. Text on image: Step by step to the perfect pom pom. thatcraftsite.com.

Why are strands of yarn falling out of your Pom Pom?

It is very frustrating if your pom pom falls apart after all your hard work.

To prevent this from happening you want to tie your pom pom up super tight. Your yarn won’t fall out so quickly.

Tightly looping the string around two or three times before you make your knot can help as well.

Another thing is to not start pulling on strands of yarn just to see if they come out. If you pull hard enough they will. And if you pull out a few of them, all the others get more room to move and fall out on their own. So resist the urge to pull on them.

Light blue fluffy pom pom. thatcraftsite.com

How to make a perfect pom pom

Yield: 1 pom pom
Active Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

Follow these steps to make a round, fluffy yarn pom pom with a DIY cardboard template.

Materials

  • Yarn in your favorite colors

Tools

Instructions

  1. Draw two equal-sized circles on your cardboard. You can use something round, like a glass, as a template. The larger the circles, the larger your pom pom will be.

    Draw a smaller circle in the middle. Like drawing a donut. Don’t make this smaller circle too big. Otherwise, you will wind so much yarn that it will be hard to tie off at the end. But don’t make the inner circle too small either, you won’t be able to wind enough yarn through to make your pom pom nice and full.

    Step 1 how to make a perfect pom pom. Draw circles on cardboard to make the pom pom template. thatcraftsite.com
  2. Cut your pom pom discs. Cut out the two large circles first. Then, cut a slit from the outer circle to the smaller one. Cut out the smaller circles too.

    Place both of your cardboard discs together to finish your DIY cardboard pom pom maker. Make sure the slits are not directly aligned.

    Step 2 how to make a perfect pom pom. Cut cardboard donut circles as the pom pom template. thatcraftsite.com
  3. Double thread your wool needle with a long, but still usable, length of yarn. Center your needle in the middle and align the beginning and end of your yarn.

    Step 3 to make a perfect pom pom. Double thread a wool needle with a long strand of yarn. thatcraftsite.com
  4. Feed your yarn through the small hole and around your cardboard pom pom template. At the start, hold the loose ends while you wrap around it so it stays secure. Continue and work your way around the discs.

    If you need to re-thread your needle, try to keep your loose ends toward the edge and not the middle. Again, hold the ends until you wrap around to secure.

    Step 4 to make a perfect pom pom. Feed your yarn through the small hole and around your cardboard template.. thatcraftsite.com
  5. Continue wrapping your yarn around in several layers until the center circle is full. The more yarn you wrap around the cardboard, the fuller your pom-pom will be. So don’t stop too early.

    Step 5 how to make a perfect pom pom. Wrap your yarn around in several layers. thatcraftsite.com
  6. Start cutting the yarn along the outer cardboard circle. With one hand, hold your donut so that your yarn won’t slide out of the center while you cut. Gently push your scissors between the two pieces of cardboard and cut all the way around.

    Step 6 how to make a perfect pom pom. Cut the yarn along the outer cardboard circles. thatcraftsite.com
  7. Cut a piece of yarn to tie around the middle. Move the two cardboard discs out a little to loop the yarn around between them. Wrap around a couple of times, and tie a tight knot. Make it as tight as you can. This one string holds the entire pom pom together.

    Step 7 to make a perfect pom pom. Tightly tie a piece of yarn around. thatcraftsite.com
  8. Remove the cardboard discs. If you are only making one pom pom, you can choose to carefully cut the cardboard to make it easier to remove. If you want to re-use it a few times, just twist and wiggle the circles and pull them out.

  9. Almost there. Trim the pom pom nice and round. Your pom pom won’t ever come out of its cardboard template perfectly round already. You will always have to trim it. The time this will take depends on how neat you want your pom pom to be.

    Fluff your pom pom up a bit and take your scissors around and around and cut off any strands that stick out. Sharp scissors will speed this up.

    Step 7 how to make a fluffy pom pom. Trim the pom pom nice and round. thatcraftsite.com

Notes

You can leave the longer strands left from tying up. Use these if you are planning to hang your pom pom. Otherwise, just cut them off.

If you enjoyed this project, you might also like these Braided Octopus Yarn Dolls. They are easy to do and the complete tutorial shows you exactly how to make them.

More Fun and Easy Crafts

Looking for more creative craft ideas to try? Make sure to check out some of these other popular DIY tutorials:

Collage image of step by step photos how to make a perfect pom pom. thatcraftsite.com.

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