Whether you’ve been knitting all of your life or you’ve never seen a knitting needle, everyone seems to be curious about knitting looms. How do they work? What are they? For a start, instead of using traditional straight or circular knitting needles to turn yarn into fabric, a knitting loom uses pegs. Knitting looms come in different shapes and sizes, some are round others are straight, but all of them accomplish the same thing: you can knit garments with pegs versus needles, which results in less strain for your hands. Many knitters with arthritis or carpal tunnel syndrome have switched over to loom knitting for this reason alone. It’s also fairly simple to learn, making loom knitting a great way to introduce children to your beloved hobby.
With loom knitting, you can create a variety of different stitches depending on how your wrap the yarn around the pegs. The gauge is determined by the thickness of the pegs and the distance between them. What’s most intriguing about these tools is that they can be used to create round garments like hats or socks, but they can also be used for flat projects like afghans and scarves.
Here’s what traditional round knitting looms look like:
Other types of knitting looms:
Rake Knitting Loom: This knitting loom comes in either wood or plastic and is rectangular in shape. This type of loom can only be used to make flat garments. Projects made with this knitting loom will have a right and a wrong side, and usually require the help of a knitting tool or crochet hook to complete a project.
Afghan: These looms comes in three main shapes: oval-shaped, S-shaped and figure-eight shaped. You can purchase both single or double raked versions, just like knitting boards. If you buy a smaller afghan knitting loom, you can create perfect squares which can be sewn together later to make an afghan.
Knitting Board: Knitting boards are made up of two parallel rakes that are connected to one another. Knitting boards can be used to create fabric that’s finished on both sides, meaning the purl side (wrong side) will be hidden between the two knitted sheets. Gauge on knitting boards can be adjusted by altering the width between the rakes. The distance between each of the pegs also affects the gauge.
Each knitting loom works a little differently, but they are generally pretty easy to pick up.
To get you started, let’s learn how to use a round knitting loom. Here’s a great instructional video from our sister site, AllFreeKnitting:
Happy (loom) knitting!
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