How to Use a Spool Knitter

Knitting tutorial: How to use a spool knitter, or French knitter, to make I-cord
I recently discovered my grandmother's spool knitter in a little box of treasures. I'm almost embarrassed to admit it, but until that day, I had never used this clever tool. Now, I'm spool knitting everything.

Before You Begin

Spool knitters are also known as French knitters. They are basically a tiny knitting loom that can be used to knit miles and miles of tubular I-cord. And what can you make with I-Cord? It can be used for everything from belts and bag straps to giant, squishy yarn. (I spool knit a 15 yard long I-cord and use it, along with a pair of giant 15 mm needles, as a visual aid when I am teaching small groups to knit.)


  • spool knitter
  • dpn
  • yarn needle
Manufactured French knitters usually come as a kit that includes all of these parts.

Thanks to Skacel for providing the addi FlipStix and Schoppel Zauberball Crazy yarn used in this tutorial. These products are available locally at many yarn shops and online at Makers' Mercantile.

How to use a Spool Knitter/French Knitter

Recommended Pattern

Ready to try this technique in a pattern? The Little Birds Phone Pocket Pattern shown in this lesson has videos to help you learn more about:
  • Turkish Cast On
  • Finchley Graft
  • Knit I-Cord
  • Spool Knitting
Little Birds Phone Pocket Knitting Pattern: Learn skills like how to use a spool knitter, or French knitter

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Knitting tutorial: How to use a spool knitter, or French knitter, to make I-cord

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The Chilly Dog: How to Use a Spool Knitter
How to Use a Spool Knitter
Learn how to use a spool knitter, or French knitter. This clever tool is not just for kids!
The Chilly Dog
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