Fluffy poms are great for any number of projects. We've used them to add extra whimsy to an already fun project, as well as to juxtapose a bit of casualness against the elegance of fine cotton or velvet - kind of like wearing Converse® high-tops with a tuxedo. A little bit of levity can add just the right touch. Whether you need one great pom or dozens, a Clover Pom Pom Maker simplifies the task, and each one will be as perfectly puffy as the next. Find some yarn and get ready to get fluffy.
Can you make pom poms with just a cardboard template? Of course you can, but we prefer to use these pom makers because they allow more symmetry and make faster work of the process. They're also quite cost effective, especially since most of them come as a set of two tools in different sizes.
Extra Large - one tool that makes a 4½" pom
Large - two tools: one for a 2½" pom and one for a 3⅜" pom
Small - two tools: one for a 1⅜" pom and one for a 1⅝" pom
Extra Small - two tools: one for a ¾" pom and one for a 1" pom
This Extra Small option is great for those times when you can't find pom pom trim in the right color match... find a perfect yarn match and make your own!
Our demonstration pom is done in a simple white yarn, and solid color poms are the most common. However, it's easy to make multi-color poms. Use just a few strands of coordinating colors, or go wild with half and half poms and other fun combinations. We show you some basic steps below for a simple multi-color pom and a variegated pom. If you do decide to go pom crazy, you can learn to create super intricate designs within your poms, like flowers or stripes as well as specialty shapes. Tutorials are available online, and we have a favorite book that shows a wonderful range of unique styles: Make Your Own Cute and Easy Pompoms.
For our pom pom demonstration below, we worked with the Large pom pom maker, using the smaller of the two tools.
One thing to keep in mind is that the thickness of the yarn used makes ALL the difference in the overall finished size. The thicker the yarn, the fluffier and larger the finished poms.
Because of this thickness issue, there really isn't a way to know exactly how long a piece of yarn to start with; there are simply too many variables in the different types of yarn. We can tell you we started with about seven yards of a standard cotton/poly yarn, doubling it for our wrap, and were very happy with the fluffiness of the results. We would recommend getting enough yarn to test one or two poms so you can make sure your chosen skein(s) is going to give you the finished look you want.
- Open up the arms of the tool and align them on either side.
- You can wrap using just a single strand of yarn, but in the interest of time, it's faster and easier to double or even triple the strand. We used a double strand. Place the raw ends of your strand on the inside of the arc of the arms. Hold the ends in place with your thumb.
- Start wrapping the yarn around the arms, catching the raw ends with your first couple wraps. Once caught, you can release your thumb.
- Wrap to the opposite end of the arc, keeping your yarn flat and even. It doesn't have to wrap super tight, just nicely snug. Go back and forth along the arc until you've used up your yarn. Hold the end of the yarn in place and close the arms.
NOTE: Because we doubled our yarn, the end was a loop. In this sample, that loop ended up to the inside edge of the arc, so it was hidden when we closed the tool. However, don't be worried if your loop (or single end) ends up on top. In fact, that's exactly what happened on our second side, and it's totally fine. Any straggling ends or loops can be trimmed when you're done.
- Wrap another strand(s) of yarn around the opposite pair of open arms in the same manner, then close that side when done.
- Holding the tool securely closed with one hand, use a pair of sharp scissors with longish blades to cut the yarn. Simply slide the tip of the scissors in between the arms and clip, running the blades up and over the arc. This takes a little bit strength because you're working the tips of the scissors; just keep your pressure slow and even.
- Do one side, then the opposite side, holding the tool securely closed the entire time.
- While the pom is still in the tool, trim any obviously long yarn tails.
- Measure another length of yarn to tie off the pom and create its hanger. Again, the length will depend on your project and how you want to finish the pom's hanger. For example, you might want a very dangly pom-pom for which you could use a tie/hanger of up to 1½ yards. For other projects, the poms may need to be sewn with no hanger showing at all. For these, the yarn for the tie/hanger need be only about 20". Err on the side of extra length; you can always trim off the excess later. A heavy thread would also work for this step.
- Slip the length of yarn in between the two discs of the tool and tie a simple knot. Secure with a second knot, pulling it nice and tight.
- Carefully open one set of arms and then the other.
- Gently pull apart the tool to release the finished pom.
- Trim up any remaining straggling ends or loops.
- Place your pretty pom poms in plenty of prominent places.
Multi Color Poms
- To make a simple multi-color pom, start with 2-6 strands of yarn, each in a different color. The number of strands/colors you can use will depend on: 1) personal preference, 2) which size of Clover Pom Pom Maker you are using, and 3) how fluffy you want your finished pom. For our 4½" sample, with used the Extra Large Clover Pom Pom Maker with three strands of yarn.
- Wrap all the strands at once, first filling one side and then the other.
- You want a nice full wrap to get the best variety of colors.
- Cut each side free.
- Tie and pop out the pom.
- For a variegated look, the idea is to wrap each color as a layer. We used the Large Clover Pom Pom Maker for this sample in the 2½" option. We started with a layer of white, then added a layer of gray.
- Wrap each color layer fully from side to side.
- We then added a final layer of pink.
- Wrap the second half to exactly match the first half.
- Cut the yarn loops through the center.
- Tie around to secure.
- Pop out another pretty pom.