Things You'll Need
- Yarn needle
- Pompom maker (optional)
Pompoms add accent, style and volume to any knit or crocheted hat. There are two simple ways to make pompoms: Either wrapping the yarn around the fingers of one hand, or using a small device called a pompom maker. Pompom makers are widely available in craft stores and provide the most uniform results, but either method creates a lovely finished product.
Making a Pompom by Hand
Cut a 10-inch piece of yarn and set it aside; you'll use this to tie the pompom.
Hold four fingers of one hand together. Use the other hand to wrap the yarn loosely around all four fingers, over and over, overlaying as many of the wraps as you can while still keeping them as straight as possible. The more times you wrap the yarn, the fuller the finished pompom will be.
Spread your middle and ring fingers apart. Thread the 10-inch piece of yarn between those fingers, wrapping it all the way around both sides of the yarn loops you made. Cinch this strand tight and tie it securely; then remove your fingers from the original wraps. The end result should look like a figure eight.
Snip through the top and bottom of the "figure eight"; then use your fingers to fluff the strands into a full pompom shape. Trim the strands as needed to create a tidy, round pompom.
Using a Clover Pompom Maker
Swing both crescent-shaped arms away from the hub of the pompom maker.
Start wrapping the yarn around the curved portion of one arm; wrap densely enough to cover all the plastic with more than one layer of yarn. On the last series of wraps, bring the working yarn toward the far end of the curved arm.
Swing the now-wrapped curved arm in against the hub of the pompom maker; do not cut the yarn.
Wrap the other curved arm as you did the first, ending with the working yarn near the free end of the second arm.
Swing the second arm closed as well; cut the tail end of the yarn flush with the pompom maker's arm.
Slice through the yarn wraps with scissors, cutting in the channel that runs down the length of each arm.
Thread a 10-inch piece of yarn around the entire pompom maker, running it through the same channel you just cut through. Pull the yarn as tight as possible and knot it securely.
Pull the two halves of the pompom maker apart; you're left with the finished pompom. Trim the strands as necessary to even out the pompom.
Attaching the Pompom
Tie a long piece of yarn around the heart of your pompom, leaving at least a 10-inch tail. Or, if you prefer, you can leave a 10-inch tail when you first make the pompom.
Thread the yarn tail through a yarn needle. Use the needle to run the yarn into the hat where you want the pompom to attach, then back out through the hat a stitch or two away.
Poke the yarn through the middle of your pompom; then run the yarn through the hat again.
Continue stitching the pompom to the hat until it's secure; four or five stitches is usually enough.
Knot the yarn securely on the inside of the hat; trim off the excess yarn.
Lisa Maloney is a travel and outdoors writer based in Anchorage, Alaska. She's written four outdoors and travel guidebooks, including the award-winning "Moon Alaska," and regularly contributes to local and national publications. She also has a background in personal training, with more than 6,000 hours of hands-on experience.