I saw a really cute DIY in a magazine with a bunch of fun, handmade alternatives to your store-bought bows for Christmas presents, one of which was a sort of felt pom pom thing. I still want to try to make that one, but it jogged my memory of when we used to make brown yarn pom poms to put in our horse's ears at shows so they wouldn't spook at weird noises. We'd always have to put cotton balls in their ears during spring break up in Alaska because huge sheets of ice would fall off the metal roof of the arena, but they stick out like a sore thumb if you have a brown horse, so we started making fancy brown ones out of yarn. Long story short, I realized that these little pom poms could be super cute on presents! The pom poms for our horse's ears didn't need to be as cute, so they were a bit more haphazardly constructed. I sought out some online suggestions as to how to make them look nice, and I discovered this method some people were using with just two cardboard circles! So easy, cheap, and they make great pom poms!
All you need is:
Something round to trace a circle (I used a bowl)
Start off by tracing two circles using your bowl on the cardboard. Draw another smaller circle inside the first circle and then cut out your first template. Lay this template over the second circle you drew with the bowl and trace your inner circle on that one (so the inner circles match up), and then cut out the second template.
Now, put the two cardboard "donuts" together and start wrapping your yarn around and around the whole circle until it's covered.
Once you've finished, take your scissors and start cutting around the edge by placing the bottom blade of the scissors between the two sheets of cardboard. Cut all the way around the circle until the yarn is severed from each side, it's already looking like a pom pom!
Take another piece of string, about 8 inches long, and place the middle between the two pieces of cardboard. Wrap the ends around to meet each and then tie them together in a double knot tightly down at the center of the pom pom. Now you can push the pom pom out of the center hole, and you're done!
You can keep the long string on the pom pom to tie it to things if you want, or you can clip them to be the same length as the rest of the pom pom. These would be fun to make into a garland, too!