I-Cord Necklace Tutorial

June 13, 2011 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

At the Etsy Craft Party I attended on Friday I got a chance to play with an I-cord machine and talk to people about the different ways to make a cord (the machine, spool knitting or double pointed needles).  I wore the bracelet I created for the rest of the night and put it with my daily jewelry (watch, college ring and small silver hoop earrings) when I went to bed.  The next morning I decided that just wearing this bracelet wasn’t going to be enough, I needed to make more I-cord!

Since Saturday was Knit In Public Day it seemed fitting to choose the double pointed needle method.  If it hadn’t rained I would have biked to the park and knit there, but it was an icky day out and I’d been at the Etsy Party for 4 hours the night before, so the most public I was getting was twitter (and this blog, a few days late!).

I’m not sure that I’ve knit anything since Christmas of 2009, and even then it was just a few tiny snow people.  I was pleasantly surprised that my hands just knew how to hold everything, although it took a long time to get into the rhythm of things since the rows are so short!  Still, by the end I was able to do 7 inches of cord in about 10 minutes, which I thought was pretty good for someone who hasn’t knit anything substantial in more than 10 years.

My go-to website for basic technique has long been Lion Brand’s, they didn’t fail me this time either, giving a simple explanation of how to make an I-cord.

I started as instructed: casting on 3 stitches (yet another thing my hands magically remembered how to do), sliding, knitting, sliding and knitting some more.  Before I’d even gotten this technique down, I already knew that I wanted to experiment with the size of the cord, expanding and contracting to make different embellishments.  I ended up doing something like this:

Cast on 3
Slide to other end, knit 3 (basic cord pattern)
Repeat for 7 inches
Knit, cast on, knit, cast on, knit
Knit 1 row
Knit 2, cast on, knit 2, cast on, knit
Knit 3 rows
Knit 1, k2tog, knit 1, k2tog, knit 1
Knit 1 row
Knit 1, k2tog twice
Knit basic cord pattern for 1.5 inches
Knit, cast on, knit, cast on, knit
Knit, *cast on, knit* repeat from * 3 times
Knit 1 row
Knit 1, k2tog across
Knit 1, k2tog across
Knit basic cord pattern for 1.5 inches
Knit, cast on, knit, cast on, knit
Knit 1 row
Knit 2, cast on, knit 2, cast on, knit
Knit 3 rows
Knit 1, k2tog, knit 1, k2tog, knit 1
Knit 1 row
Knit 1, k2tog twice
Knit basic cord pattern for 7 inches

I apologize for the lack of abbreviations or standard notation.  (Did I mention how long it’s been since I knit something?)  I should probably say that you continue to slide at the end of each row.  If you can understand my pattern, you will end up with a necklace with three bobbles, 2 large and a small one between them.

I Cord Necklace

The problem is, they change size depending on how you push and pull the cord.  I was looking around my apartment for something small, a marble would be ideal, to stick in the spaces.  The best I could come up with without leaving home (still raining) was some styrofoam.  I’d recently purchased an exacto knife so this seemed like a fun experiment.

I cut the styrofoam into a rectangular prism at first, but quickly realized the cord wasn’t tight enough and the corners would stick out.  So I sculpted a bit until I had a piece I liked.

 

 

Then I pulled at the yarn around a small hole until it was big enough to fit the foam.  Once it was in, I wiggled it around and stretched at the cord until the hole had nearly disappeared.

I repeated the same process for the other two bobble spaces.  Squishing the styrofoam helped a bit, and I was even able to cut out protruding corners while the foam was inside the cord.

  Overall I’m happy with the design, although I may end up looking at the thrift shop for some marbles or other small spheres to use instead.  The styrofoam is just a bit more visible than I’d like it to be.

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Entry filed under: Etsy Listing, Products, tutorial. Tags: , , , , , , .

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