What the hell is spool knitting, you ask?
Spool knitting (aka “French knitting”) is basically knitting done in a constant spiral instead of in rows. It’s typically used to make sleeves and socks, but a small spool, like the kind I used as a kid, produces what’s basically a long rope, or an i-cord.
Since I’m apparently a highly suggestible person, of course I wanted to start a spool knitting project RIGHT NAO! Though, because it was 1am, I couldn’t go to the craft store to get a knitting spool.
Well clever me, I figured out how to make one, and you can do it too…
How to start spool knitting RIGHT NOW
I used a toilet paper roll:
- I cut into the top of it so that I had four “prongs,” similar to if you were using this to make a little cardboard castle tower.
- I reinforced the prongs with toothpicks and painter’s tape — like a splint, since that’s what I had lying around. You could also tape four Popsicle sticks to your roll. But as long as you have a little tube with prongs around the top, you’re good.
To start your rope:
- Make a slipknot in some yarn and put this on one of the prongs, with the tail hanging inside.
- Loop the yarn around the other prongs.
- Then you’re going to wrap the yarn around and around, always lifting the yarn from the last pass up and over the new yarn and prong.
- You can also easily change colors by tying the old color to the new one and tucking the knot inside the rope as you continue to knit.
Eugh, this is easier to do than to explain. So here’s a video that I did not make…
If you don’t have a knitting needle like in the video, you can use another toothpick, and if you have stiletto nails, like me, you won’t need anything!
So besides keeping six-year-olds occupied on road trips, what’s the point of this?
There is of course killing time and making yourself appear even more talented than you really are; there are a TON of different projects you can do, from necklaces and scarves to purses and super unnecessary pen cozies. But the simplest thing to make is a great big circle by sewing your rope around and around. Depending on how long it takes you to get bored, you could end up with anything from a pot holder to a rug.
Mine is just passing dog/cat bed territory right now and will hopefully grow up to be a rug. And it better, because there is a lot of fighting for space on the thing right now. You could also make two of these circles, sew them together, and stuff them to make a pillow. And if you’re Hugh Hefner and you have a round bed, this is the dorkiest/most awesome way to get a new blanket.
That’s pretty damn good for some yarn and an old toilet paper roll, eh?