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Home : Patterns : Spool Knitting - How to use a Spool Knitter

Free Craft Pattern: Spool Knitting - How to use a Spool Knitter

Lion Brand® Jiffy®
Pattern #: BK4K-0602009
Knitting is the art of creating a fabric by pulling loops through loops. Although it is often done on needles, it can be done on looms as well. A spool knitter is a small round loom that can be used to create a knitted fabric. Spool knitters are cylinders that have three or more pegs or nails that stick out of the top. The nails are used to form and hold the stitches while knitting. The most common type of spool knitter has four pegs or nails. You can buy a spool knitter or you can easily make one. The one in our example is made of polymer molding clay that can be baked in the oven to harden it.
Rating: ****4.0 (based on 5 reviews)
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SKILL LEVEL:  Beginner (Level 1)

SIZE: One Size
The size of your braid depends on the size of the yarn and how far apart the pegs (nails) are on your spool knitter. If they are close and you use a thin yarn, the braid will be narrow. In the example shown, where we used Jiffy yarn and a knitter with nails that are about an inch apart, the braid was 3/4 inch wide [roughly 2 cm]

PUBLISHED IN:  By Kids, For Kids

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Image of Spool Knitting - How to use a Spool Knitter
The fabric produced on the spool knitter can be flat or in a cylindrical braid. The spool-knit braid is most common and is shown in this tutorial
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Click here to enlarge image and see more about item 450-114: Jiffy Yarn: True Red
Click here for larger swatch
Discontinued - click here for possible substitutions
Sorry, product is discontinued; no colors are available.
*Jiffy (Article #450). 100% Acrylic; package size: Solids (except 151 Dusty Grey): 3 oz./85g; 135 yd/123m balls
Multi (plus 151 Dusty Grey): 2.5 oz./70g; 115 yd/103m balls

You can also buy materials separately
To change colors, click the drop-down list or swatches above
•  450-114 Jiffy Yarn: True Red
$ 3.99  
Discontinued, sorry!
Click for yarn substitutions
Giant 5 inch Plastic Red Superknitter (Large Spool Knitter)   $ 2.95  Or make your own knitter!
Not available, sorry!
Lion Brand Knitting Needles- Size 5 [3.75 mm]   $ 2.70  Note that only one needle is used. If you bought your spool-knitter, the needle is included with the knitter.

Spool Knitting - How to use a Spool Knitter

Lion Brand® Jiffy®


Exact gauge is not essential to this project.


1. Start by threading the yarn through the spool knitter from the top so that the loose end passes through the spool and comes out the bottom.

2. Wrap the yarn in the counter clockwise direction around one of the nails.
3. Continuing to the next nail in the clockwise direction, loop the yarn around the nail counter clockwise.

Repeat until there is a loop on each nail.


4. Continuing in the clockwise direction, place the yarn on the outside of the first nail so that it is positioned on the nail above the loop that is already on the nail. Your original loop is on the bottom and the new yarn (not yet a loop) is on the top.

5. Insert a slender knitting needle into the loop that is on the bottom and that goes around the nail
6. Use the needle to lift the loop up, over the new strand of yarn and over the top of the nail, and slide the loop off the needle so it is on the inside of the spool. You will now have only one loop on the nail -- the new loop!
7. Give a gentle tug to the tail of the yarn to pull the stitch just made down into the center of the spool.

Proceeding in the clockwise direction, repeat steps 4-7 on each nail. Each time you lift the loop over, you create a stitch. Looking at the top of the knitter, it begins to look like a web. Soon, you'll find that there is a thick braid being created in the center of the spool!

There are many uses for spool knitters and the braid they produce. Click here for the easy pattern for our tiny spool-knitted teddy bear.

To find out more about spool knitting, visit the Lion Brand Yarn Blog: Spool Speak



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Pattern Average Rating: ****4.0 (based on 5 reviews)
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Spool Knitting - How to use a Spool Knitter Reviewed by Sue O on 2011-09-10 *
Would be helpful for the demo pictures if a different color yarn was used than the color of the spool. The spool, the yarn, and the stick are all red, so it is very hard to see. Need a striking contrast in the colors to see the instruction pictures better. Spool knitting is really fun and have done it since childhood. Was a great activity on many long vacation car rides. If you like spool knitting you can also teach kids to finger knit, where the 4 fingers on one hand are used as the pegs and the yarn is looped and pulled through to make a loosely woven piece. Google "finger knitting."

When you are in New York City, visit the Lion Brand Yarn Studio at 34 W. 15th Street for a one-of-a-kind yarn lover's experience. For more information, visit the website,
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