Center pull ball

What is the purpose of doing a center pull ball versus just rolling the yarn into a ball that the yarn comes off the outside? Is there a benefit to doing it this way? Just came across the video and was curious.

The biggest thing for me is that it keeps the ball from rolling all over the place. Center pulls tend to stay in place, yarn coming off the outside tends to make the ball roll all over - at least that’s been my experience.

That’s the advantage I find too. I like yarn cakes better than balls though, they sit nice an flat.

Ooooh! I like that! My yarn does tend to run away on me at times and sometimes it goes places it isn’t easy to get to! I was actually just reading about the sentre-pull ball a few moments ago in Elizabeth Zimmerman’s book Knitting Workshop and she suggested it for wool in particular because wool can stretch while being used and then go back to its shape, causing a garment to shrink. She said that using a centre pull ball causes the wool to relax as it is being used. To be brief.

If you’re stuck using a non-center pull and don’t want to re-wrap it, put it in a bowl to keep it from rolling.

I hate when my ball keeps rolling away. I like the center pull yarn cakes I make and then they sit right next to me while I knit. There is a video here in KH on the video tab. Not sure off hand which section.

My personal preference is from the center so that it doesn’t roll all over. I did see at a craft fair last weekend a wooden contraption that you put the skein of yarn over this dowel and then when you unwrap from the outside it stays put and rolls on the dowel. It seemed like a good idea.

or put that rolling ball inside a (clean!) flower pot with a hole in the bottom, turn it unside down and run the end of the yarn out the hole.

I, too, prefer a center pull cake/ball.

It also depends on how your yarn comes. If you get in a hank you have to wind it up before you use it. Might as well be wound into a nice center-pull cake. It’s so easy to do too. I use a paper towel tube. Put a length through the tube then wind around the outside of the tube, toward the top. Don’t cross over the top of the tube, then when your done, tuck the loose end in and pull the whole thing off! A piece of Cake as it were!

What I’d like to know, is WHY they come in hanks to begin with. I spend all this money on some yummy yarn and I am the one who has to wind it up into a cake? I don’t have a winder and all my hand attempts work ok, but result in awful knots somewhere.

Why don’t they COME in cakes?

I’m with you on this one, Krystal.

Many of the manufacturers feel that a hank shows off the yarn nicer, also with some yarns, they feel the yarn might get stretched if left wound in a ball for months. I dunno about that, most fibers are pretty elastic, but it is recommended you don’t wind up your yarn until just before you use it.

I’m going to try the centerpull ball and see which way that I like it best. I usually prop the ball in a corner of the couch so it doesn’t roll anywhere.

Thanks for all your responses!


I have heard (and seen for myself) that some yrans just dont like being roled too tightly for too long. A hank is nice and loose so it can sit in storage/on a store shelf for a good long while.

Think about how if you frog somthing the yarn you pull out is all crimped. Now a tight ball won’t crimp obviously but it is an example of the memory that yarn has.

What’s a yarn cake?;jsessionid=DVCSRU5HZYML4P4SY5GVAFR50LD3OUPU?CATID=cat2716&PRODID=prd20753&_requestid=246993
The yarn on this winder s a yarn cake - round and flat on top & bottom - like a cake.

Thanks for explaining that, it’s good to know there is an actual reason for it.

I am just really annoyed about hanks right now because my lace weight Malabrigo is a big giant mess right now because of it being in a hank and then trying to hand wind it. I did it nice and slow, and steady and spent hours at it, and only got half a hank wound up before abandoning the rest.

Never buying hank-ed yarn again. In my experience it just hasn’t been worth the extra hassle. :???: