by Twila Lenoir
This nifty little spool knitter is known by many names; some people call it a Knitting Spool, while others know it as a Corker, Knitting Knobby, Knitting Nancy or Spool Knitter.
Many generations of children have made their first knitted projects using a homemade spool like this one.
In 1909, Mary A. McCormack wrote a book of knitting spool patterns. Today, Project Gutenberg has published Spool Knitting online for everyone to see, and you’ll find many spool knitting patterns there, including patterns to make a washcloth, doll clothes, children’s slippers and a baby’s rattle.
What you will need:
- A large wooden spool
- Acrylic paint markers
- 4 finishing nails
- Spray sealer
- Large plastic needle
- 9 bugle beads
What You Do:
If you don’t have a wooden thread spool, you can find them in craft stores that carry wood. Also ask gram or older relatives; they will probably have one. The ones you buy at the store now are all plastic and won’t work for this project – but don’t forget those yard sale finds!
First take the remaining thread off the spool and any stickers that may be on the top or bottom.
On most wooden thread spools there are star lines on top of the spool. Hammer two of the nails in the lines about a 1/4 of inch away from the hole. Now hammer the last two nails opposite from the two nail you did in the lines, the same distance away from the hole. Each nail will be at the corner of a small imaginary square shape, with the spool hole centered in the middle of the square. Hammer the nails in to the same height all around, making sure they are steady in the spool.
Now you can decorate the knitting spool (corker) as I have, or just leave it as it is. If you decorate it, protect your design with a sealer.
We also decorated the needle with a strand of ribbon knotted at the hole and put 5 beads on one end and 4 beads on the other end and knotted off.
This would be a nice gift for a teenager or pre-teen; my daughter loves hers and shes only ten.
She made the ankle bracelet, pictured on the left.
How to Use a Knitting Spool (Corker):
Follow the diagram, starting at (A)put the end of the yarn thru the hole and wrapping around as shown 1 thru 4.
Follow diagram (B) with the yarn from the ball have the yarn on over the loop, pull the bottom yarn (loop)with the needle over the yarn, from the ball. Continue with the next nail, making sure the yarn from the ball is over the loop from the nail.
Pull the bottom string every other nail to have it tightly knitted. Keep going and you will see it coming out at the bottom.
Make the knitted string long enough to go around your ankle or wrist. Try it with some cotton crochet; it comes out dainty.
For ending the chain you have made, Take the last loop you made off the peg and put it on the next nail to the left and pick up the bottom loop and slip it off, pull the tail tight, do the same with the next nail,putting the loop to the next nail to the left and pull the loop over the top one and drop off, when you get to the last nail, cut the string from your ball and take the last loop off and put the ending string that you cut from the ball and put it thru the last loop and pull tight.
Longer strings and thicker wool can be used to make circular pot holders, trivets and many other projects. Just roll the knitted string flat on a table, until you have a large enough circle or rectangle for your project. Sew together from the back, by hand, to complete.