I’ve been doing a few little crafts here and there for baby toys. One that I had fun doing was a poi!!
Every NZ kid has probably played with poi, twirled a poi and sung a few kapa haka songs themselves but I’m really into poi being used in a traditional and contemporary way! They’re also a great toy for babies.

As an aside… While googling I came across this cool poi routine:, how awesome are those girls!

Anyway, to make a poi I had to think back to school and then sort of went ahead with a little bit of intuition.


Plastic bags



Fabric (I used adhesive fabric)



Make the head of your poi: 


I stuffed about five plastic bags into a large, strong plastic bag and formed a ball inside the outer bag. Secure with string and make sure it is tightly compacted.
Create the tail:

 Measure and cut three bunches of wool. I measured the wool against my finger tips to elbow, then cut six lengths of wool for each bunch.

Tie the bunches together and plait.

Leave enough wool at the end to tie around the head and sorry to be real, but please ensure the plait can’t fit around baby’s neck… You don’t want to have a potential strangling hazard on your hands.

Attach the tail to the head: 


 Separate the wool strands into four bunches.

Tie the head to the tail in a cross pattern.

Spread the wool outwards so it is evenly encasing the head.

Try to be tidier with your knots than what I’ve done here, you can’t hide a big ugly knot, even under fabric!!

Finishing touches:

I used fabric with an adhesive applied to the back. I removed the backing and pressed the poi into the middle of the fabric.

Then very carefully, encased the head in fabric, bunching it around the tail.

I secured the fabric with some wool.

And it’s done!

I loved making this and it was super easy!!
The other poi in the pic above was made at our SPACE group, using the same method. The only exception was that the poi is stuffed with blanket batting which is softer for babies.

This reminds me of my favourite children’s story “Areta and the Kahawai“. Not only because I share the same name as the girl in the book, but because of how the poi is woven into the storyline and of course the lesson at the end. 

Tell me what you think!  What easy crafts have you made for your kids?

9 thoughts on “DIY Poi

  1. Pingback: Faking at being a craft mum | Project māmā

  2. Pingback: Treasure Baskets | Project māmā

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