Thursday, November 8, 2012

DIY make your own extra chunky yarn

now that I have my giant knitting needles 
and my giant circular needle... 
I need some extra chunky yarn!

One way is to make a bigger yarn by working with two or three balls at the time (like I did here for the extra textured front), but I'm looking at something much chunkier, but not as thick.
Therefore, ... experimenting time!
I had a ball of pastel yellow yarn (similar to this one), and wanted to make some tests for an idea that I have in mind.
I want to use my size 36 US (20mm EU) needles, so this is what I came out with!

It's an i-cord! A very-very-very long i-cord!
So glad I have my spool knitter,
(but just in case, here's the hand-knit tutorial)

supplies needed:

* worsted weight yarn
* spool knitter ( Caron Embellish-Knit! Machine Kit )

how to make your own extra-chunky yarn:

Follow the instruction of your spool knitter, keeping always the yarn on the opposite side of the spool knitter handle, without tension.
Pay attention to always have the weight to the i-cord that comes out of the spool knitter, and once the cord gets longer, wrap it in a ball, and tie a small knot so won't get tangled.
It took me about 20 minutes to get through the whole 50gr. ball of yarn.
Considering that I plan to do this for a larger project, I would budget about 3 hours of extra work to make my yarn.

And these are my tests:


needles size US 36 - EU 20mm
10 stitches
5 rows stockinette

9" x 4"
23 cm x 10 cm

sample is chunky but still soft


10 chain stitches
1 row single crochet
1 row double crochet

9" x 3-1/8"
23 cm x 8 cm

The sample is really thick -
probably need a bigger hook
(which I don't have)

and some closeups:

...stay tuned for some BIG-FAT-KNITTING!
xox, d.

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  1. OMG Donatella, this is incredible. I cannot WAIT to see the sweater you make. You're really making me want to start knitting again... could be dangerous lol!
    Smart n Snazzy

  2. bellissimo!
    anch'io sto facendo la maglia tubolare anche se la mia macchinetta per farla è giocattolo, risale all'infanzia! va beh, funziona ancora! :D

  3. Amazong good and yet simple idea...! Love it! I think, I definitely need such a spool knitter... ^^

    1. most def!! best 15$ investment! it works wonders and can make so many things out of these cords! :)

  4. I have the same spool knitter and I have never been able to use a worsted in it. In the directions, it even says that only a sport or DK can be used. What's your trick to make an i-cord with a worsted in the machine? Thanks!

    1. Hi Dawn! when I read the reviews on, they weren't all that good, and I guess I got only lucky. I believe it has to do with the quantity of lubricant that the manufacturer put inside the spool knitter.
      I even made the cord with kid mohair (I'll post it soon) which is supposed to be a killer for the spool knitter.
      Last week I spool knitted about 1 kg (2 lbs) of worsted wool, and after finished, it was starting to make squeaky noises. So I opened it up (and almost wasn't able to put it back together) and add vaseline to the parts. Now feels like new again.

  5. So if I alternate the crochet instructions can I make my own yarn? I don't have a spool knitter so would have to make my yarn manually, but I do crochet.

  6. This is brilliant, thank you for sharing!

  7. I just got an Embellish-Knit, but mine won't work with my worsted weight? Did you do anything special to the yarn or machine to get it to work?

    1. mine worked immediately fine, try pass the yarn with a paraffine candle (the ikea tea lights...) this should make the yarn smoother and easier to go through the needles :)

  8. Could you please tell me the amount of worsted weight yarn you used, and the yardage of I-cord you got from it. Thanks!

    1. I used a ball of 100 grams - I didn't measure the yardage obtained after making the i-cord! it's been long time ago and since then I frog it and used for other projects .. d.

  9. Hiya!
    This is absolutely in my to-do-list as I have suffered from finding the right yarn thickness for large projects, e.g. blankets. Permission to bookmark and will buy that Embellish Knit thingamajig soon! :)

    1. Hi!!! I promise, you are going to have tons of fun - it can get boring and quite a long task to keep rotating that handle, but you can do it in phases, alternating with knitting! enjoy!!! xox, d.

    2. Hiya, Donatella...
      In your post you were using worsted weight yarn, so I was wondering if this tool can also use thinner yarn types like light fingering or fingering? Have you tried it with thinner yarns?
      thx- Dee

    3. Hi Dee, thinner yarn works the best - worsted weight is the maximum that can handle. I used a thin mohair, cotton, and other wool as well.

    4. Good news!! Mine arrived today and I CAN'T STOP making iCord!!! LOL. I tried to crocheted some of the finished ones, but gotten confused on how to bind off with some leftover icord. Tsk... I think I will have to figure it out... or do you have suggestions?
      You were right too, that thinner yarns work really well! :) Thanks soooo much for this article, really helped me. :) I'm off now to icord some more from my stash. :)

  10. Replies
    1. Hi! I made several things (as soon as I'll be on my computer I should remember to link them to this post as well) - and another cowl worked with mohair wool, and crocheted - they are in the "scarves" page!


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