At the most basic level, a pom-pom is a decorative fluffy ball. They come in many sizes and colors and are made out of a variety of materials like paper, plastic, and even fabric. Cheerleaders use pom poms to attract the crowd’s attention, to distract the opposing team, to place emphasis to their movements, and to add sparkle to their routine, especially during competitions.
You can order pom poms from a store and have the manufacturer make them according to the color and size that you want. Depending on how large the pom pom is or the material it will be made of, each can cost as low as $5 and as expensive as $20. Your other option is to make your own. Although homemade pom poms may not look as clean and perfect as store-bought ones, they still serve their purpose and are ideal for small pep rallies and local games.
Making Your Own Pom Poms
A good material to use for homemade pom poms are plastic garbage bags. Choose the bags that carry the color you want, or mix and match them with the standard black trash bags. Ten trash bags is enough for a pair of pom poms.
Place the bags on top of each other on a flat, hard surface. Trim the awkward parts of the bags before you begin and make sure that they are placed evenly. Once they are aligned, fold all the bags in half and line up the two halves evenly. Cut strips halfway up the folded bags; the size of the strips depends on how full the pom pom will look. If you want it to look thinner, cut thick strips; for a full look, cut thinner strips.
Once you’re done cutting, fold the bag lengthwise. The folded top will serve as the handle; hold it together with duct tape. Then take some strips into slightly moistened palms and fluff the strips by creating friction. If you want your pom poms to look thicker, rub the strips for a longer period of time.
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