Knitting With A Home Made French Knitting Bobbin
By Mike on Sunday, August 24 2008, 21:52 - Permalink
On the previous page, I detailed the making of my French knitting bobbin - now let's see how to use it...
(For a video tutorial version of these instructions, scroll down to the bottom of the page)
To begin, take the end of the wool/yarn and push it downwards through the central hole. Pull a few inches through so that it doesn't come loose.
(In this picture, the main ball of yarn is underneath my left hand)
Next, make an anti-clockwise loop around one of the pegs.
Carry on, making an anti-clockwise loop around the next peg - and the others in turn.
Repeat until all the pegs have a loop on them - it should look like this.
Starting The First Stitch
Now lay the free yarn (the end that has the ball attached, that you've been looping around) across the peg that was the first one to receive a loop.
You'll need to hold this securely in place, but don't pull it excessively tight, or it will become harder to knit next time around the circle.
Push the needle through the loop on the bottom of the peg and pull it gently out towards you.
Keeping the working end of the yarn reasonably tight, bring the loop up, over it and over the top of the peg.
Push the loop right down over the back of the peg, then pull the needle out.
The yarn you laid over the peg earlier has become the new loop for this peg - and the working end of the yarn is ready to lay across the top of the peg immediately to the left.
After pulling the needle out, turn the whole apparatus a little and continue (from step 5 on this page) with the next stitch on the next peg.
After a while, a tube of knitted material will form, descending through the hole in the middle.
Pulling gently on the knitted work, once in a while, helps to keep things neat and tidy.
Uses For French Knitting
There doesn't have to be a use for the finished work - some people will find enough enjoyment in simply doing it, but the neat tube of knitting produced here is far from useless...
It can be sewn together in spirals to make pot holders and hats - it can be sewn onto the edges of blankets to make a decorative trim - or it can be sewn together in a zigzag to make square pieces that can further be joined to make blankets and other items.
If the work is simply removed from the bobbin, it will quickly unravel - so it needs to be cast off.
The easiest way to do this is to cut off the ball of yarn, leaving a convenient length to work with, then pass this end through each of the loops on each of the pegs in turn - it should then be possible to remove them from the pegs and pull tight the end of the yarn to fasten it permanently.
You're not limited to working in one colour only - if you want a striped effect, just knit a few rows in one colour, then cut off the ball of yarn and tie in a new one - as the knot works into the knitting, it's usually possible to make the loose ends disappear into the inside of the knitted tube.
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