I saw long time ago a woman knitting with a plastic cup. It seemed very interesting, so I found out how she did it. Seems complicated, but, really, it is not. The point is to make a piece of knit with no seams, totally tubular. This is a very fast way to knit, easy too. Considering the diameter of cardboard tube, number of wire pieces and thickness of the thread, we get the density of knit pattern - if we take a thick wool thread on more wire pieces, it will be more dense, and if we use thin thread with only few wire pieces, the knitted area will be more see-trough, fish-net type. This is very useful if we are trying to make summer decorations, ie on linen bags - in the thread tube we can place a pebble, snails or sea-shells, and sew on some pearls.
Also, if you take a tube of a bigger diameter, you can knit a tube shawls, sleeves, leg and arm warmers... anything. You won't have any seams, which is prefered if you are a messy beginner person when it comes to this. This should ease it a lot.

In this description I will explain the basics and the way this method works, so I used a thick wool. You can play & combine, have fun!

Technique Materials

Scissors, pliers, cardboard tube, adhesive tape, wire.

Wool, crochet needle.

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  • Missing

    May 28, 2010, 11.46 AMby lottatroublemaker

    I love I-cords, and make them both with a French Knitter/Knitting Nobby/Knitting Nancy/Knitting Bee (or “Strikke-Lise” here in Norway, “Knitting-Lisa” – many names for these, comes in wood and plastic in a variety of sizes) and recently mostly the automatic (crank) Embellish-Knit which I found on eBay for $10-15. That makes yards and yards quite quickly. I like my cords to be tightly knitted, so I often use double strands of baby wool or even sports yarn (worsted weight), even if the instructions say that this is too bulky (I just go slower and more carefully). Sometimes I also turn them inside out, for a somewhat different surface appearance. I love to felt them in the washing machine, it makes a real neat and hard cord, most yarns I have used then end out looking somewhat “boucleish”, having a somewhat loopy texture. Looks real nice. I use them to sew onto knitted bags and such, e.g. in the form of monogramming or some simple decoration, e.g. a whimsical heart or spiral. Looks real neat! Nice to use for edges on bags too, as piping. I get 100% wool yarn, but NOT superwash, if it is supposed to be felted. I then wash it with a bit of dishwashing detergent on 60 degrees Celsius, the program I normally use for towels, cotton comforter covers and such (I don’t boil towels/linen anymore).

    My first knitting nobby my dad made me when I was 3-4 years old. It was my first knitting experience. All kids got them back then. He simply took a wooden thread spool and put 4 nails in it.

    There are lots of knitting nancy’s for sale on eBay. If you search for “knitting loom”, “knitting rake”, “knitting wheel”, “knitting board” etc., you can also find larger round ones, rectangular ones as well as straight ones. I have also seen sets with many straight ones which you could puzzle together to fit your need. BUT, i must say, if one wishes to knit larger things, it is so much easier to knit in the traditional way with needles, circular or straight, depending on the need (2 straight ones, set of 5 straight ones or a circular one. For circular straps for bags, I sometimes knit with half of the stitches distributed onto 2 straight needles, using a third one to knit with). But, if one for some reason won’t or can’t go for traditional knitting, I can see that these can be of help, they are very easy to use. One could even knit straight rectangular or circular panels, then use sewing patterns or drape onto a dressform, to sew/serge the panels into knitted garments. You can also get cheap, simple knitting machines, first and foremost made for kids, but they are proper knitting machines and you surely can construct garments from knitting made with them, only restriction is the size of the panels.

    Some links to examples of ready-made knitting looms etc. http://cgi.ebay.com/New-Easy-Knitting-MINI-KNITTER-2-looms-Hand-held-Pick-/350314527632 http://cgi.ebay.com/Set-4-Round-Knifty-Knitter-Knitting-Looms-/280510823757 http://cgi.ebay.com/CLOVER-WONDER-KNITTER-KNITTING-KNOBBY-TOOL-LOOM-FUN-/290379704495 http://cgi.ebay.com/Knifty-Knitter-Long-Loom-Series-knitting-loom-4-set-/350316197806 http://cgi.ebay.com/18-Knitting-Board-Small-gauge-adjustable-loom-/180511281224 http://cgi.ebay.com/Knitting-Pal-Loom-Walter-Palange-Antique-Loom-Knit-fast-/300373302956 http://cgi.ebay.com/Knifty-Knitter-Weaving-Knitting-Loom-Tool-AidHelpsHands-/260597220648 (This I dig!) http://cgi.ebay.com/POCKET-KNITTER-9-Knitting-Loom-KIT-w-Hook-7-Patterns-/370347502177 http://cgi.ebay.com/Flexi-Loom-Knitter-Baby-8-5-Round-Knitting-Nifty-31peg-/260538400588 http://cgi.ebay.com/10-Knitting-Board-Adjustable-Loom-22-stitches-/180512070139 http://cgi.ebay.com/KNITTING-MACHINE-PORTABLE-MACHINE-SHOW-U-MAKE-PONCHO-H_W0QQitemZ300371171978 http://cgi.ebay.com/Embellish-knit-automatic-spool-knitter-icord-trim-/230478812660 http://cgi.ebay.com/Embellish-Knit-Machine-/390194354650 http://cgi.ebay.com/Caron-Bond-America-Wyr-Knittr-Wire-Knitting-Spool-Kit-/370375717862 http://cgi.ebay.com/Bond-Caron-Ultimate-Yarn-Sweater-Knitting-Machine-NEW-/390200430019

    WOW, there’s obviously an abundance of knitting “aids” out there, that is for sure!!! I bet it would be easy to also make a straight knitting loom yourself too, using a board and some round head nails… Or even a circular or rectangular one, if you’re handy and have the needed saw etc. Just sand it real well, nothing is more annoying than yarn snagging on wood!

    That reminds me, I have 4—5 knitted hats sitting there waiting for me for this weekend, they need to get decorated… It’s not like I’m in a rush or anything, I mean – it’s luckily a while until winter sets in again!!! :)

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    Mar 30, 2010, 04.04 AMby agladewe

    To answer Samboy’s question about knitting a flat piece: you could knit the first round till you get to the first stitch. Then instead of keeping on and going round and round, stop and reverse the process, working yourself back to the first stitch that you knitted. Then stop again and reverse again. Keep going back and forth, not joining the stitches at the end of each round. Another tip: try adding some type of light weight on the bottom of the piece once it emerges from the tube and it will flow automatically as you knit rather then having to tug on it. This recycling technique is really a great idea, as it enables you to use thicker yarn and make larger items than the spool type knitter! Thanks for sharing!

  • Missing

    Mar 15, 2010, 07.52 AMby samboy

    Is it possible to modify the knitting process so that you do not end up with a tube but a flat piece of knitting?

    1 Reply
    • Meme_large

      Mar 19, 2010, 06.34 AMby nojallakuutamo

      Yes, if you know how to remove knit-loops from the needle during knitting – it’s not a problem. You take two loops together, pull the thread trough them and add that new loop on the needle, and repeat until the end. That’s it :)

  • Missing

    Feb 18, 2010, 11.48 PMby jane47

    I, too, did this as a child using four finishing nails (no heads) in a wooden spool. I believe one of the names for this was “Knitting Nobby.” It was a teaching aid to help girls learn knitting and a suggested use was to make reins, belts, leashes, ties for knitted caps, or coiled and sewn mats or potholders. It may have been an item in a book called, “A Girl’s Treasury of Things to Do”. An elderly friend had a home-made frame about 18" long made of two long and two short pieces of hardwood and finishing nails, also. It was large enough to make scarves and baby afghans. It worked on the same principle as the various plastic ones available today.

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    Feb 8, 2010, 12.34 AMby staticfax

    so homemade knifty knitter.

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    Jan 30, 2010, 06.20 PMby wonderland1

    super je ovo! jedva cekam da probam :) fala sto si stavila

    1 Reply
    • Meme_large

      Jan 30, 2010, 06.26 PMby nojallakuutamo

      Nema na čemu, nadam se da je jasno napisano. Obavezno stavi slike kad probaš :)

  • Missing

    Jan 29, 2010, 03.38 PMby Glynis Lailann

    I remember doing this at school using a wooden bobbin with four nails knocked into the end (sewing thread was wound on wooden bobbins in the old days – not plastic spools like today). I think the process was called French Knitting.

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    Jan 20, 2010, 04.03 PMby bellamabella

    you can also use your fingers. i do

    1 Reply
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    Jan 16, 2010, 06.42 AMby elishar

    Just like bekaem, I too had a plastic one as a child. It was meant to knit tube dresses for Barbie. Circular knitting needles can give you the same effect, but aren’t free and environmentally friendly like your method!

    1 Reply
    • Meme_large

      Jan 17, 2010, 11.59 AMby nojallakuutamo

      I have circular needles but this is fun :)

      Also, I’m a passionate recyclist not keen on throwing anything away, cause I KNOW that I will use it later for something.

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    Jan 15, 2010, 10.47 AMby anajan

    Fenomenalna tehnika! Moracu da probam jednom.

    1 Reply
    • Meme_large

      Jan 17, 2010, 11.57 AMby nojallakuutamo

      Apsolutno, vrijedi probati jer ti se odjednom stvori hrpa ideja gdje možeš to primijeniti.

      Absolutely, it’s worth trying cause you’re able to see a lot of situations where you can apply the stuff you learned.

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    Jan 11, 2010, 01.15 PMby bekaem

    that’s cool! i used to have a thing called a ‘strick-liesel’ as a child that did the same thing. I’d completely forgotten about it by now and it’s interesting to see how you made your own!

    1 Reply
    • Meme_large

      Jan 17, 2010, 12.01 PMby nojallakuutamo

      I saw this liesels you’re mentioning in few stores, the price is not too hot, cca 10 euros, but, if you can spend these euros on wool threads or something else, why bother?
      Especially because you can adapt the diameter and number of wire loops how you want it, and pay almost anything.

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    Jan 7, 2010, 05.37 AMby redoubt

    This is interesting. It looks like a different method than the knitting I’ve done on circular looms, but that said, I think it’s a better method. And I like how you’ve included directions for making your own loom.

    1 Reply
    • Meme_large

      Jan 7, 2010, 06.53 AMby nojallakuutamo

      Can you post your technique? I would like to see how it works in your case.
      Thanks :)

    • This is a question
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