If you love creating with yarn, you’re probably familiar with crocheting and knitting—but have you considered knooking? Knooking is a fun variation of yarn art that incorporates aspects of both traditional crafts but requires a needlework tool called a knook. Knooking isn’t quite knitting, and it’s not quite crocheting—it’s an entirely unique process that’s definitely worth a try.
A knook is a needlework tool that resembles a crochet hook but has a small hole at one end. You thread a cord through the eye of the knook, and the cord holds your live stitches in place while you work on the next row—sort of like a second knitting needle.
Knooking is believed to have originated in Japan in the early 1990s, but not much else is known about the craft’s history. In some ways, it is similar to the art of Tunisian crochet, which is another type of yarn art that uses special tools. While the two crafts are similar, however, they are not the same. You cannot use a Tunisian crochet hook in place of a knook because it lacks a hole where you connect a cord.
Ready to get started with a new craft? Here’s what you need to know to learn how to knook.
Knooking requires just two basic materials: a knook and yarn. A medium weight, or worsted, yarn is typically best for knooking. However, it’s most important to make sure that your yarn fits snugly within the eye of your knook—so if you want to work with a heavier weight yarn, simply choose a knook with a larger eye.
First, thread your knook with a nylon cord, pulling about six inches of it through to the other side. Choose a cord that’s about the same thickness as your yarn; it should fit fairly snugly in the eye of the knook.
Start your project with traditional crochet technique: Tie a slip knot onto your knook, and then work a starting chain. From there, the process is a mix between crocheting and knitting. You will hold the hook upside down, picking up stitches and then transferring them to the cord. Then, flip your work over and work the stitches from the cord onto the knook.
Ultimately, you create knit and purl stitches—similar to knitting—but with a crocheting motion. And in the end, you produce a piece of fabric with the look, texture, and stretch of a knit.
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As with knitting and crocheting, you can find many free patterns specifically for knooking—including projects such as scarves, hats, granny squares, and even cute stuffed animals. However, because knooking is a less common technique, you likely won’t find quite as many pattern options as you would for knitting or crocheting.
If you like knitting or crocheting (or both!) and want to try a new hobby, try knooking. This relatively new technique incorporates elements from both crafts, so it makes for an interesting new challenge—and an innovative way to make all sorts of knit fabric projects!
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