How to Do French Knitting

Updated April 17, 2017

French knitting, also called spool or peg knitting, is a method of circular knitting so easy it is a favourite craft for kids. The essential tool for French knitting is the knitting spool, an item known by many names including knobby, mushroom and corker. French knitting, among its many uses, is used to make necklaces, bracelets, stuffed toys, scarves, place mats and hats.

Hold the knitting spool so the posts at the top of the spool point up.

Push the end of the yarn down through the knitting spool. Use the knitting spool needle to push the yarn down if needed.

Pull the yarn out of the bottom of the knitting spool, leaving 6 inches of yarn hanging down.

Wrap the yarn attached to the skein counterclockwise once around the first post of the knitting spool.

Wrap the yarn counterclockwise around each post, moving in a counterclockwise circle around the top of the knitting spool.

Hold the yarn, from left to right, across the outside of the very first post you used. Do not wrap the yarn around the post.

Use the knitting spool needle to pull the wrapped yarn on the post over the top of the yarn you are holding across the outside of the post. Pull the wrapped yarn over the top of the post, letting the wrapped yarn fall behind the post.

Continue to knit in a counterclockwise circle, using the same method of holding the yarn across the outside of the next post from left to right and pulling the bottom yarn over the post with the knitting spool needle, until your knitting is the desired length.

Cut the working yarn with scissors, leaving 6 inches.

Thread the yarn end into a tapestry needle.

Poke the tapestry needle through the loop of yarn on each post, letting the loop come off the post and onto the tapestry needle (and yarn tail). Work in a counterclockwise circle around the top of the knitting spool until all of the yarn loops on the posts are on the tail yarn.

Pull the finished knitting up through the knitting spool.

Take a stitch through the top of the knitting with the tapestry needle and make a knot. Remove the tapestry needle. Knot the other tail of yarn at the beginning of the knitting.


Use a wooden skewer, toothpick, slim screwdriver, small double-pointed knitting needle or crochet hook if you lose the needle that came with your knitting spool. Pull the yarn hanging from the bottom of the knitting spool gently every five rows you knit, to keep the knitting moving down through the knitting spool.


Never pull the yarn too snug around the knitting spool posts. Tightly wrapped yarn makes French knitting very difficult.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 knitting spool and needle
  • 1 skein worsted-weight yarn
  • Scissors
  • Tapestry needle
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About the Author

Kira Robbins is a freelance writer who has been writing and photographing since a young age. Robbins' articles from high school were published in her local newspaper and earned recognition in competition. She graduated from Pikes Peak Community College with an A.A. degree & hopes to continue her education in photography.