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I remember doing French or spool knitting with yarn as a youngster. Little did I know I would still be doing it as adult and with wire! Spool knitting is a fun wire technique using a spool knitter (sometimes called a dolly or nancy) which can be home made or bought. Shown here is the necklace part of my Copper Reflections jewelry set.

There are all kinds of  spool knitting tools you can buy. The number of pegs also vary. Which one you choose will be a matter of personal preference. 26 or 28G wire is best.

Prestrung Beads

Kelly of Offthebeadedpath has two excellent videos to show you how it is done with wire with prestrung beads. If you need a non-video tutorial, check out Wigjig`s instructions.

Part 1 explains how to start spool knitting.

Part 2 covers the casting off and finishing the necklace.  She uses bead caps, but you could also use metal or coiled wire cones.

Captured Beads
A very popular way to make jewelry is to drop beads inside the knitted tube as you knit along. Just squeeze the tube together before and after each bead.

No Beads
If you just knit wire, you could then treat it like Viking knitting. Draw the knitted tube through successively smaller holes of a draw plate to make your own wire chain!  There is no need to buy a draw plate. Just get some wood and drill holes with different diameters.

Check out Wigjig for Diane Trepanier`s wonderful variations using different colored wires, Softflex, multiple chains and mixing in fiber.  Her work was the direct inspiration to the creation of the funky bead and eyelash yarn jewelry  (below) I designed and wrote about. It sold, too!

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips 


  1. I remember spool knitting when I was a child...I've crocheted a bracelet but never would have thought to use the spool technique...

    Thanks Pearl for the suggestion and inspiration!

  2. Yes, I used a spool knitting tool with yarn as a kid, too. My mother and grandmother gave me their leftovers from knitting and I made yards and yards of string to leash my toy animals. And now with wire it is even more fun.

  3. Brilliant Pearl, I have been holding onto a wood spool for 10 years now, never figuring out how it works - thanks Peace

  4. Love the necklace you made Pearl. This seems like an easy technique, I must try it - along with the dozens of other techniques I want to try :)

  5. I had a local artist show me this technique (her specialty) and it was quite fascinating. Beautiful stuff!

  6. Hi! I just found your blog, and reading older posts. I'm making first steps learning how to make beaded jewelry and your blog is full of information I need! Have to go through briefly!

  7. There is a ton of information in my blog, AnaVar. You might find it helpful to check out the Free Tutorials link at the top of the page which leads you to specific posts arranged by category. Or check my archives. Enjoy!

  8. This does bring back memories of childhood spool knitting with yarn, never realized it could be done with fine gauge wire.
    I find that sometimes a step-by-step photo tutorial is easier to comprehend, as on occasion a video demonstration may go too quickly and I've not found a rewind button so that I can go back a few frames and review what I missed. Also at times the person doing the video will be positioned in such a way that it's hard to see exactly what they're doing...I hate when that happens.

  9. Great tutorial on making viking knits. I love to knit with wire, but never worked this way. I became your follower and visited your etsy store. Wonderful jewelry, Pearl.

  10. Thanks for enjoying my wire knit posts! I too love knitting with wire. Just popped over to your blog and store! Pearl

  11. I too did knitting with yarn on a spool as a kid...This is a great way to use the viking knit technique and adding beads..Thank you for your video...just on part 2 we could not see everything that you were doing with the end cap and 10 gauge wire because it was out of line with the camera
    Natalie aka Safti from Safti's Creations


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