Don't get me wrong I use to just pull the yarn from the middle because it came that way but as I became more obsessed with yarn and making things I found that my favorite yarns just didn't come prewound to be center pull.
Like most newbie hookers/knitters I went the easy route and bought myself a yarn baller. It's a great investment, don't get me wrong. there is nothing more fun and satisfying then staring at a lovely pile of yarn cakes after a good hour of balling yarn. But I also take great satisfaction in handballing my center pull balls. We are limited with the yarn baller to one shape. I feel I can make either round, oval, or sphere shapes when I hand ball them. I recently came across another way of handballing the yarn without making a bondage show of your thumb.
Lets dive into the many ways to make center pull yarn balls.
Most yarn the average person comes across is already center pull
This is the easiest to work with and I've found has I've gone further down the road of yarn work I don't like this and end up reballing them anyway. Most the people I enjoy working with leave the skeins like this.
This is how a lot of the yarn I work with comesThis ball was a gift from the yard sale fairy and I can't even find the outside end piece. I normally gut these kinds anyway because I hate having a ball bouncing around as I pull and work from it.
Gutting a yarn ball is simple, just reach in one of the ends and hook some of the very inside and pull out. I unwind the gutted part and find the very middle then start reballing the yarn from there.
To begin with I bought a simple 45$ ball winder of Amazon.com. I spent hours balling my entire yarn collection. To this day balling yarn is a Zen for me, it helps me calm down and think about things for the day.
I found this wonderful webpage a few years ago, before I was heavily involved with Pinterest. That explained how to handball a center pull. I was mesmerized with this method and found I like it better then my ball winder This method makes tighter balls and as it unwinds from the inside I find it less likely to tangle.
These were done with this method.
Once I started spending hours on Pinterest I came across another method to the above link. It's basically the same but you don't need to worry about setting the winding down and possibly ruining it by removing your thumb.
I have been enjoying putting this method into use only within the last week because that large knitting needle wasn't in my possession till then. I didn't know what I was going to do with it when I first was given it but it dawned on me this method required one needle alone and all the balls on the table were done with it. The one I'm working on is a normal ball done the old fashioned way so I'm reworking it to be center pull.
May the Yarn be with you.
Special thanks to my dog Gerbil for refusing to move during the photos and to Joey, my girlfriends cat who insisted on being the black blurr you see and the little black paws in the last photo.