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Spool Knit Necklace Craft Projects

Updated on June 14, 2014

Easily Make Necklaces by Spool Knitting Wool

I recently "discovered" spool knitting to be one of the easiest crafts I've ever picked up, and I'm exploring the potential of i-cord - the round knit cord created by spool knitting. Today, it's knitted necklaces made with wool then felted to tighten it and finish the look.

I'll show you two different styles I created. Plus I'll show pictures of a failed experiment that's worth sharing (at least until I figure out how to make the theory work). Finally, I'll share some other i-cord necklace projects from other crafters.

All photos on this page are my own unless otherwise credited.

What You'll Need for These Necklace Projects

  • A french knitter
  • Wool yarn in the color(s) of your choice
  • A crochet hook, nut pick, or darning needle for lifting stitches
  • Beads of your choice
  • Beading needle (10-14)
  • Fireline for stitching beads in place

The Most Important Tool - A French Knitter

Spool knitters go by many names, including french knitter, bobbin knitter, knitting nancy, and many more. They all do essentially the same task - allow you to create lengths of i-cord in very little time.

Knitter's Pride Laminated Wood Knitting Dolly
Knitter's Pride Laminated Wood Knitting Dolly

I love this beautifully-crafted wooden french knitter. It looks like it would be a pleasure to hold in the hand and work with every day. If you plan to purchase a knitter, I highly recommend this one!

 

I made this knitting nancy from a piece of PVC pipe and slats from a bamboo window shade.

I made this knitting nancy from a piece of PVC pipe and slats from a bamboo window shade.
I made this knitting nancy from a piece of PVC pipe and slats from a bamboo window shade.

How to French Knit

Project #1: The Long Necklace

The Finished Long Necklace

The Long Necklace
The Long Necklace

To Make the Long Necklace

  1. Spool knit about 6 feet of i-cord in the wool color(s) of your choice. My i-cord was about 1/2-inch wide throughout. Feel free to knit your cord as long or as short as you want... I like lots of loops in my necklace!
  2. Felt the i-cord by washing it in hot water. Washing can be done by hand (takes some time) or in a regular wash cycled in your washing machine. Then dry the i-cord in a hot clothes dryer. Felting agitates the fibers so the tiny barbs in the wool stick and knot themselves together forming a tight round cord. (See video felting tutorials below)
  3. Using your beading needle, Fireline, and beads of choice, begin stitching the beads onto the last 6 inches of each end of the i-cord. I chose to use garnet rounds and coins and stitched them closer together at the very end and further apart as I moved up the cord.
  4. Your necklace is complete! Wrap it around your neck as many times as you like. Knot it at your neck or let the ends dangle loosely as shown.

Photo Tutorial for the Long Necklace

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Spool knit your i-cord. Use the Spool Knitting 101 video above for a quick and easy tutorial.Felt the i-cord. Find videos for how to felt wool with or without a clothes dryer below.Stitch beads onto the ends of the i-cord.Beading Tip: Use the lid from a cottage cheese, sour cream or yogurt container to hold round beads so they don't roll away.Here is a completed i-cord Long Necklace.
Spool knit your i-cord. Use the Spool Knitting 101 video above for a quick and easy tutorial.
Spool knit your i-cord. Use the Spool Knitting 101 video above for a quick and easy tutorial.
Felt the i-cord. Find videos for how to felt wool with or without a clothes dryer below.
Felt the i-cord. Find videos for how to felt wool with or without a clothes dryer below.
Stitch beads onto the ends of the i-cord.
Stitch beads onto the ends of the i-cord.
Beading Tip: Use the lid from a cottage cheese, sour cream or yogurt container to hold round beads so they don't roll away.
Beading Tip: Use the lid from a cottage cheese, sour cream or yogurt container to hold round beads so they don't roll away.
Here is a completed i-cord Long Necklace.
Here is a completed i-cord Long Necklace.

Wool Yarn for the Season

For these projects, you need 100% wool yarn because it won't felt properly if you use anything less.

How to Felt Wool - With or Without a Washing Machine

Other Tools & Materials You Need for These Projects

FireLine Braided Beading Thread 6lb,Smoke Grey, .006-Inches,125 Yards
FireLine Braided Beading Thread 6lb,Smoke Grey, .006-Inches,125 Yards

Fireline is strong, easy to work with, and the smoke grey color blends into many projects. It is my favorite stringing material for many beading projects and I highly recommend it for this one.

 
DMC 1764-10/12 Beading Hand Needles, 6-Pack, Size 10/12
DMC 1764-10/12 Beading Hand Needles, 6-Pack, Size 10/12

For small beads, you definitely need proper beading needles, and these are perfect for this project.

 
Garnet Gemstone AAA Grade Round Beads 4-5mm /14 Inch Strand
Garnet Gemstone AAA Grade Round Beads 4-5mm /14 Inch Strand

I used garnet in my project. You'll want to coordinate with the color(s) of yarn you select. Click here to find more beads to choose from.

 
Green Peridot Gems Chips 3-4mm/34 Inch Strand of Beads
Green Peridot Gems Chips 3-4mm/34 Inch Strand of Beads

Peridot is my favorite bead for spring and I'm always looking for ways to work it into projects.

 

Project #2: The "Y" Necklace

The "Y" Necklace
The "Y" Necklace

To Make the "Y" Necklace

Spool knit just as you did for the Long Necklace, then stitch one end about 4-5 inches from the other end using matching wool yarn. Felt the wool. The "y" created where the ends are stitched together should felt smoothly together so the stitching cannot be seen.

Bead the tail end of the "y" to fit your tastes, and it's ready to wear. Just loop the necklace over your head as many times as you like, and since the i-cord stretches, you can make it as loose or tight as you like.

Which of these two projects do you like better?

Which of these two projects do you like better?

See results

Project in Progress: The Marble Necklace

The Marble Necklace - In theory...

Click thumbnail to view full-size
I purchased marbles (the kind you would put into a glass vase) and slipped them one by one into the center of the spool knitting.The yarn formed a net around the marbles.My hope was that when I felted the i-cord with the marbles inside, the wool would tighten around the marbles and be somewhat see-through.Instead, the marbles fell out in the washing machine. On my next attempt, I'll hand-felt the i-cord in the sink to control the agitation more.
I purchased marbles (the kind you would put into a glass vase) and slipped them one by one into the center of the spool knitting.
I purchased marbles (the kind you would put into a glass vase) and slipped them one by one into the center of the spool knitting.
The yarn formed a net around the marbles.
The yarn formed a net around the marbles.
My hope was that when I felted the i-cord with the marbles inside, the wool would tighten around the marbles and be somewhat see-through.
My hope was that when I felted the i-cord with the marbles inside, the wool would tighten around the marbles and be somewhat see-through.
Instead, the marbles fell out in the washing machine. On my next attempt, I'll hand-felt the i-cord in the sink to control the agitation more.
Instead, the marbles fell out in the washing machine. On my next attempt, I'll hand-felt the i-cord in the sink to control the agitation more.

More Knitted Necklace Project Ideas

Torhcon Necklace
Torhcon Necklace

Spool Knitted Torchon Necklace

There is no limit to the possible hoops, loops, and bangles you could use to dress up or dress down this necklace. The designer who shared the project says this one is a carabiner she found at a market in Rome. Personally, I envision it with a wooden hoop I have in my craft closet right now.

The pattern is free, so it's definitely worth a closer look.

Visit Ravelry.com to check it out.

Celtic Knot Necklace
Celtic Knot Necklace

Knotted Necklace

This necklace is formal and fancy meets kitschy and cute. It's old world Celtic meets modern cool. Follow this pattern or create your own knot.

This pattern tutorial is detailed for knitting needles, but I don't see any reason why a person couldn't use i-cord for the project.

Visit Your Knitting LIfe to get more information.

Celtic Knot Necklace
Celtic Knot Necklace

Celtic Knot Necklace

I like the way this free Celtic knot pattern is laid out and explained. The Lion Brand site uses diagrams and actually lays the knitted cord over the diagrams so they are easy to follow to create this dramatically eye-catching necklace. The pattern is free, though they are definitely promoting their yarn and knitting products.

If you do an Internet search for images of other Celtic knots, I also imagine a clever person could use i-cord to create just about any design and make it into a necklace.

Making Fun Stuff and Things from I-Cord - Books and Kits

Making Jewelry with a French Knitter: The Easy Way to Make Beautiful Beaded Accessories (Design Originals)
Making Jewelry with a French Knitter: The Easy Way to Make Beautiful Beaded Accessories (Design Originals)

With 9 great projects, this book is sure to please - for both ideas and inspiration!

 
Spool Knit Jewelry
Spool Knit Jewelry

There are any number of things you can make with i-cord and this booklet and complete kit will get anyone started creating. This kit is highly rated as a great gift!

 
Chain Link Necklace
Chain Link Necklace

Chain Link Necklace

I, for one, love the look of the chain. The links could be as large or small as you like; there could be as many or as few as you like; they could even be multi-colored or glammed up depending on your chosen yarns. So many possibilities...

What adaptations would you make to this beautiful idea?

There is a small fee to purchase this pattern at Art Fire.

Bingle Bangle Necklace
Bingle Bangle Necklace

Bingle Bangle Necklace

This necklace was the inspiration for my Marble Necklace. The author at TingleTangle used small balls of roving - or wool that has not yet been spun into yarn. By felting, she created small round bulges in her cord.

It made me think the marbles might work, and I liked the idea of using something that some light may be able to shine through. I haven't given up on the idea yet...

In the meantime, check out these Bingle Bangle Necklaces and matching bracelets.

What do you think of these spool knit necklace projects?

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    • Elyn MacInnis profile image

      Elyn MacInnis 4 years ago from Shanghai, China

      I like the Celtic knot project. Cool idea! Thanks!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      This is one I can put my hands into.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      I especially like the long link necklace. Nifty new craft technique to learn.