How to make a knitted knot necklace

Let's get knotty (sorry, I had to)! There's a lot you can do with a ball of yarn and even more if you know how to knit. The humble I-cord as it's so strangely named is easy to make and has about a million uses. I'll show you how to turn an I-cord into a funky cool knotted necklace.

But wait, how do I make an I-cord? Take a break and head over to this tutorial on Purl Bee. They're real knitting experts and will take very good care of you on your I-cord journey. Just don't forget to come back to make your necklace!

Supplies:

  • 1 I-cord that is 22 inches in length (I used the 3 stitch method to make mine)
  • a length of chain
  • 2 bead caps, 2 jump rings
  • Needle-nosed pliers (ideally two pairs)

STEP 1: It's time to knot. Follow my lead, okay?

I followed the steps for this Witness to your Splendour knot. It looks really complicated and you might freak out a tiny bit when you see that the video is 7 minutes long! It goes very slow, so it's easy to follow and I stopped by knot around the 4-minute mark.

STEP 2: Let's attach our bead caps onto the ends of our I-cords.

Every bead cap is different. There are tons of styles out there. I just picked these ones up because I thought they were puuuurdy but you can use just about any type. On this one, I fed the end of the yard through the post inside and then tied it off by weaving it in and out of the cord.

STEP 3: Put on the chain.

Use a jump ring to attach the bead cap to your length of chain. It helps to have two pairs of pliers for this part. Then close that ring back up.

STEP 4: Get funky, cuz you just made a knitted knot necklace, woo!

Did you try this? Tweet me a photo or send one over to me on Instagram.

Shetland wool and textile traditions

I've just come back from a week-long trip to the Shetland Islands. It was all a bit magical, a fine mix of hiking, hitchhiking, camping and meeting lots of darling Shetland sheep (and ponies). We managed to see a big of everything while we were there but favourite of all, was a visit to the Shetland Textile Museum just outside of Lerwick. 

The stories in the museum of women who used to carry peat on their backs through fields while herding sheep and knitting at the same time are just wild. The intricacy of Shetland lace is enough to make your eyes go crossed. I even had a go at the spinning wheel, but was absolutely rubbish at it!

Oh well, I guess it takes practise, doesn't it?

Learn to knit: hand warmers

Where did this chill come from? It seems like summer ended pretty abruptly, and now we're in full swing of a grey, drizzly autumn. The windows are shut, likely till next spring, and we've even pulled out our blankets from the closet.

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While I do wish for sunny and crisp autumn days like I'm used to in Niagara, I don't mind snuggling up in bed with a cup of coffee and my laptop. Working from bed is so much better than the office. Colder days means one thing: knitting season has arrived. I never really feel like knitting in summer, it just doesn't feel right but i've pulled out my needles now, printed off some new patterns, notable is this jul hat from Jenny Gordy over at Wiksten.

Cooler mornings mean it's about time to pull on the handwarmers. That next step before it's full-on mitten season. Here's a very simple pattern to follow if you're just starting out with knitting or want a quick project to whip up in a weekend.

I've just started a pair myself and think they'd look pretty precious with some buttons sewn along the side.

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SUPPLIES

  • 5mm knitting needles
  • 1 ball aran weight wool
  • Needle for sewing up seams
  • Button, optional

Cast on 38 stitches.

Row 1: k all the way

Row 2: k4, p30, k4

Repeat these two rows until it is big enough to wrap around your hand.

Cast off leaving a long tail, approx. 30cm.

Use your needle to stitch the two long sides together, leaving a 2" gap for your thumb, about 1" from the top of the hand warmer.

Weave in ends so they're hidden.

How to knit simple hand warmers

Finally the afternoons are warm enough to venture to the park without a jacket but when the sun hides or you catch a shadow, it's still fresh and chilly, even more so at night. These hand warmers are perfect for cycling home from the city after it gets dark.

MATERIALS:

  • any dk wool
  • one pair 4mm knitting needles
  • darning/textile needle

PATTERN:

Cuff

Cast on 42 sts (approx 7 inches wide), leaving a long tail for sewing up later

Knit 14 rows of (k2, p2) ribbing

Body

Row 1: knit

Row 2: purl

Row 3: *(p1, slip 1 pwise to last 2 sts), p2

Row 4: purl

Repeat until there are 9 ridges in total (or more depending how long you want your handwarmers)

Top

Knit 4 rows of (k2, p2) ribbing

Cast off loosely

Finishing up

Using tail from top, sew edges together 1.5cm down.

Using the tail from the bottom, sew edges together, leaving around 3cm hole for your thumb

Weave in ends and you're done! These are perfect for beginner knitters that want to flaunt their new-found skills.

How to knit a cactus

There are knit cacti everywhere and they are the most darling things I have ever seen. What's even better is that they are easy to make, especially for beginner knitters. This is the most brilliant way to use up odd balls of green wool you have at the bottom of your stash and the best part is, there's no real pattern to follow.

Use a smaller needer than the recommended size for your wool and just go for it, knitting a narrow rectangle. I've done mine in k1, p1 but I've seen others in moss stitch that look really cool too.

Once you have a rectangle as large as you want it, loop your tail through the remaining stitches on your needle to create the top of the cactus and stitch down the sides using a tapestry needle and the tail of your yarn. Stuff it and close, nestling it in a jar of garden stones or in it's own mini terracotta pot. Pin the hell out of it because these make mighty fine pin cushions.