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If you are looking for a form of knitting that you can teach your kids, French Knitting which is also called Spool Knitting, might be just the ticket!
Most of the people I know that are around my age can remember learning how to do french or spool knitting when they were at school. Only the tools we used were slightly different.
French Knitting | © Deborah Mason & Knitting Naturally
Way back when, the tools we used were made out of wooden cotton reels!
Wooden reels are a bit more difficult to find these days as most cotton manufacturers now use plastic reels, but you can buy one of the tools (like the one in the photo) from any good craft store.
The knitting produced using this method is a narrow tube which can be used to make crafty items for the kids, like necklaces, dressing table mats, floor mats, soft toys etc.
French or spool knitting as it is sometimes called, is a fun activity that you can do with children from around the age of four and up. Younger than that and they might well be able to learn how to knit this way, but it will not hold their interest for very long.
I have spent some very pleasant time with my two grand-daughters teaching them how to use a Knitting Spool and it is something they like to re-visit almost every time they come to see their Grandma!
Feed the end of your ball of yarn through the center of the tool and hold the end against the tool with your left hand.
Wrap the yarn right around each of the four tacks at the top so that you have a loop of yarn around each one. Then you wind your yarn around the outside of the tacks above the row of loops.
Using the stick you get with the tool or a crochet hook, lift the loop on the first tack and lift it over the yarn above it. Repeat this for the other three tacks. Give the end of the yarn (at the bottom of the tool) a slight tug to pull the stitches down to the base of the tacks.
Congratulations, you have finished your first row! Repeat the process until you have the length you require.
How to Use Your French Knitting
When you have a nice long tube of knitting, you are probably going to want to make something with it so here are a few suggestions:
- Use one strip of knitting to make a necklace. Sew another one into the shape of a flower and attach to your necklace.
- Sew together your french knitting strips to make a scarf.
- Make short strips and fill them with stuffing to make the arms, legs, head and body for a small doll or teddy bear.
- Sew your strip into a coil to make a mat.
- If you don't like your mat, you can use starch to shape your mat into a hat.