People use a variety of tools to accomplish the viking knit. I use a large wooden knitting needle as shown in my previous post on how to make viking knit jewelry tutorials. One disadvantage with it and similar wooden dowels is the need to mark the tool to keep the loops evenly spaced. Hexagonal tools like some pencils or Allen wrenches or keys do a better spacing job.
No matter what you use though, the need to make a scrap wire clover to get started is a pain. That's why I bought the Lazee Daizee Viking Knit tool which is available from some beading suppliers. This clever invention by Stephanie Eddy eliminates this time consuming and fiddly step.
Another advantage of this tool is the reduction in wire waste. Some artisans like to use scrap wire for weaving an initial section because the work may not be even at the beginning. I found there was no need to do this. I just cut and sacrifice just the bits linking the work to the top.
The kit consists of a hexagonal plastic pencil like tool with a removable top. The pin is to help create more space so the wire can get through if you weave a little too tightly here and there. I tested out the tool with 4 and 6 loop viking knitting.
The tool has a handy hole to feed the wire end through. It's really not that necessary but will help keep the end steady as you lay your foundation row.
There is a little bevel edge where the pin is pointing below which helps catch the loops of the foundation row. It takes some practice to get even loops around. There are six holes at the flower like top. For a 4-loop viking knit, I used holes 1,2, 4 and 5 in the top.
Once set, it is a breeze to proceed with Viking knitting. After a few rows, I removed the wire end from the hole to weave it into the work and to set up for adding wire addition. The instructions explain how to use the hole to help with wire addition but I found it much faster and less awkward if I didn't use it.
For instructions on how to add wire, see my previous post. The picture below shows the short wire ends of the old wire and the added new wire being woven into the work.
If you are making a long piece, all you have to do is pop the top and keep going!
When done, you're supposed to snip the foundation row.
Add the lengths of gathering wire - I have 2 for a 4 loop viking knit - in the second or third row down.
Twist the gathering wire together,
The fun part is pulling the weave through a draw plate and watching all the unevenness disappear!
The instructions had a very useful draw chart showing the final lengths of work by wire gauge (24-28G), number of loops and draw plate hole size. It confirmed what I had already discovered - you can draw a much longer piece using 4 loops rather than 6 for the same length of the same gauge wire. That makes sense because there is more straight wire sections available for stretching with a 4-loop piece.
Shown below are two woven lengths using 28G wire. The 4 loop one on left and the 6 loop on the right were drawn through the same holes. The 6 loop weave not only looks denser but looked slightly thinner too because I had to pull harder (and thus stretching it) to get it through the draw plate hole.
The conical bottom of the tool is for making a coiled wire conical bead if you wish to make your own end caps. Many people would prefer to buy suitable metal cones or caps, methinks.
Verdict? Highly recommended. I will make all my future Viking knit projects with this tool. Note that I have no association with Stephanie other than as a satisfied owner of the tool. Here's the new Viking knit bracelet I made for myself - I prefer them plain without beads. End caps or shorter conical beads are preferable but I couldn't wait for my end cap order to come in!
All photographs taken with my Modahaus setups.
Before You Go:
- How to Spool Knit Wire Jewelry
- Bead and Wire Knitted Earrings Tutorials
- Color Graduated Wire Lace Necklace Tutorial
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips