Winding Yarn Balls by Hand with a Center Pull

Learn How to Wind a Center Pull Ball of Yarn by Hand with this photo and video tutorial. No yarn swift or yarn winder is needed, use only your two hands to create an easy center pull ball of yarn, string or cord! Center Pull Balls keep your yarn neat and organized and make starting your next crochet project easy! Winding yarn balls is simple, click the video below or use the written instructions and photos to reroll your yarn today!

Should I wind my yarn into a ball?

A center pull ball of yarn is the easiest way to knit or crochet from, HOWEVER, it is NOT the best way to STORE your yarn! When you wind your yarn into a ball it can stretch out the fiber which can affect your gauge. This will also make the yarn behave differently from the same yarn that was not wound into a ball. It is best to wind your yarn into a ball only when you are ready to use it.

Why do people roll yarn into balls?

Knitters and crocheters, or any fiber artist, wind their yarn into center pull balls because it is neat and also the easiest way to work with your yarn. When you have a hank it can easily become tangled and it is not always easy to find the center on a skein.


  • Yarn to Wind   
  • Hand  
  • Scissors (optional)                                       
  • Darning Needle or Crochet Hook (optional)

How to Wind a Center Pull Yarn Ball by Hand

Step 1: Find your end, lay it over the palm of your non- dominant hand. Leave a long tail and use your middle, ring and pinky fingers to hold your yarn.

Step 2: Grab the yarn coming out from the top of your hand between your thumb and pointer finger, bring the yarn back and behind your thumb. Wrap around your thumb and come back towards the middle of your thumb and pointer

Step 3. Now bring your yarn over and behind your pointer finger, wrap around your pointer and come back towards behind your thumb.

Step 4: Wrap around your thumb again, coming back between your two fingers to go behind and again wrap around your pointer finger.

Step 5: Keep repeating wrapping in a ‘figure 8’ motion up your fingers.

Step 6: Using your dominant hand (hand used for wrapping), pinch where the yarn crosses tightly and slowly wriggle it off of you fingers. DO NOT let go of the yarn once removed.

Step 7: Carefully switch your yarn from your dominant to non-dominant hand making use to keep pressure on the spot the the yarn crosses. Again using your middle, pointer and pinky, hold that tail taught. Begin wrapping the yarn around the tip of your thumb and yarn.

Step 8: Continue wrapping your yarn around the loose ends and your thumb using your pointer finger to spin the ball you are forming. Keep your thumb over the spot the the yarn crosses and make sure to not wrap your tail into the ball.

Step 9: Continue wrapping on a diagonal and around your thumb and the ball forming. As the ball gets larger you rill be able to spin it more easily in your hand. Your thumb will stay slightly covered to protect the center pull you are creating.

Step 10: Once you are reaching the end of your yarn, turn the ball you have created and wrap a few time perpendicular around. If needed cut your end.

Step 11: Using your fingers, a darning needle or crochet hook loop your end around your yarn to secure it. You now have a center pull ball!

Learn More About Crochet and Yarn

Read my Post How to Design a Crochet Pattern – 23+ Tips & Tricks or if you love Mandal like I used for this tutorial check out these patterns! 15 Free Lion Brand Mandala Yarn Patterns


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