Knitting | Knitting spools | Knitting Nancys | Knitting Doll | French Knitters

Spool knitting, corking, French knitting or tomboy knitting is a form of knitting that uses a spool with a number of nails around the rim to produce a narrow tube of fabric. The spool knitting devices are called knitting spools, knitting nancys, or French knitters.

The technique is to wrap the yarn around the spool's pegs. The yarn is then lifted over, thereby creating stitches. This process is repeated continually until the project is complete. 

Spool knitting is a traditional way to teach children the basic principles of knitting. According to Mary McCormack, author of Spool Knitting (published in 1909), "Few elementary exercises have aroused more interest in the child than the toy knitting; due, perhaps, to its simplicity and his power to do it easily and well."

Spool knitters typically have four or five pegs (or brass nails), although the number can range to more than one hundred.

Many things can be made from the resulting tube. For example, it can be wound in a spiral to produce a mat or rug or, if a larger spool with more nails is used, a sock or a hat could be made. Historically, spool knitting has been used to make horse reins.

Spools sold as "knitting nancys" sometime had a picture of a girl painted or printed on them, thus resembling a wooden doll. Homemade knitting spools are sometimes made by placing a peg-like object, such as a nail, into a hard solid object, such as a block of wood.

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