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Knit with a Spool? Yes!

Updated on January 3, 2018

Knitting Knobby or Spool

Spools come in different sizes.
Spools come in different sizes.

Have you ever used a knitting spool?

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Productive and Fun Craft

Spool knitting, also known as "corking," is a way to make tubular knitted cord without knitting needles. Old-timers used a wooden spool left over from sewing thread and drove nails in one end to make small frames for knitting. Now you can buy pegged spools ready-made at any craft store. This kit from Alex Toys includes a spool, yarn, colorful buttons, and a plastic tool for pulling the yarn loops over the pegs. (You can substitute a crochet hook for the tool if your child finds it easier to mange.) The kit is not recommended for children under three years of age. My own children enjoyed creating cord like this when they were around kindergarten age.

A knitting spool provides hours of fun and can be used to produce both decorative items and wearable accessories. The cord is the right width for headbands or belts. It can also be coiled and sewn (like a braided rug) to create coasters, 3-D appliques, or place mats. Thread narrow elastic through the middle of a short piece of cord to make scrunchies or headbands.

I have found knitting to be a great indoor activity that can keep kids busy and productive on a rainy day. Both girls and boys enjoy this activity. Perhaps your young wilderness man would like to use some camouflage print yarn to make a lanyard for his pocketknife and keys. I have six children (three boys, three girls) and most of them have spent some time spool knitting.


Don't tell your kids, but this cord is known in knitting circles as I-cord, from the term "idiot cord," because after making a long length of this cording most knitters are ready to pull their hair out from boredom. This very repetition, however, makes it a great activity for children who are still developing fine motor skills. Adult knitters usually make this cord using two double-pointed needles, since that is faster than using a knitting spool. A video below demonstrates this technique.

If you are looking for an activity for a crafty, creative child, give the Alex Toys Cool Spool a try.

A Complete Spool Knitting Kit

What crafts do you recommend for children?

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    • jennabee25 profile image

      Jenn Dixon 

      4 years ago from PA

      I actually have an old one of these spools that belonged to my grandmother. There is still a project on it. I should probably learn how to use a spool.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      This is indeed going to be useful on rainy days.


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