Aug 19, 2014

Craft Lab: Giant (and also not-so-giant) Pom-Poms

Fluffy, fuzzy fun!

Today's project:  Giant pom-pom's
--cardboard pom-pom makers (see photo above--that cardboard thing that looks like the letter C?  You need two of those, plus two cardboard circles somewhere between the size of the hole and the size of the C.)
--scissors with a sharp point (kids' safety scissors don't work so well)

What we did:
1.  Oops, no photo of this IMPORTANT FIRST STEP: tuck a piece of yarn between the two cardboard circles so that the tails are hanging out of the open part of the "C."  You'll want to be sure to choose a very sturdy yarn for this step.  It doesn't have to match your pom-pom yarn.  This is the yarn that you'll eventually be using to cinch all of your short cut yarns together to make the pom-pom, so you don't want it to break or get lost in the winding process!

2.  Wrap yarn around the pom-pom maker:
You can go with random wrapping, or try to engineer a pattern (this was a variegated yarn that I separated into stripes as I wrapped it):
 Wrap lots of yarn.

 LOTS of yarn!

3.  Squeeze the two cardboard circles onto your wrapped yarn and hold tight so your yarn doesn't just all fall apart.

4. Cut the wrapped edge.
 5.  Once all the yarns are cut, tie the ends of your cinching yarn somewhat loosely (not cinched tight yet) and remove the cardboard pom-pom maker.
 6.  No photo of this, but cinch your yarn as tightly as you can now!  This is what keeps your pom-pom from falling apart!

7. Your yarn will likely be wildly uneven, so now it's time for the fun "haircut" stage:
 (holding a donut while you trim is optional.)

Bonus:  If you want to make a smaller pom-pom and don't want to mess with the cardboard circle, just wrap yarn around two fingers, 
 Cinch it, then cut the loops and fluff! 
Can you identify the final pom-pom results shown in these instructions in the group photo at the top of this post?

Hindsight tips:
-the more yarn you wrap, the fuller (and nicer) your pom-pom will be.
-Some yarns don't work as well for small pom-poms.  For instance, the yarn in the donut-eating picture wasn't floppy enough to fill in the gap made by the cinching yarn when it was made into a finger-pom.  The big size worked great!
-Cardboard pom-pom makers may be destroyed by the removal process.  Some of these were cut by hand and others were cut with a laser cutter.  If you're cutting them by hand, I'd recommend an exacto knife and cutting mat instead of scissors.

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