Arm Knit a Quick Cowl

Try your arms at one of this fall’s most popular DIY trends, arm knitting.

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It doesn’t matter if you’ve been knitting for years or just picked up your first pair of needles last weekend - arm knitting is a fun, easy way to enjoy a form of knitting that produces quick, larger-than-life results.

Arm knitting isn’t too different than traditional knitting: you cast on stitches that you then knit to create your desired piece. But instead of needles you hold in your hands, your arms do the work as oversized tools. (Just make sure you’ve taken your watch off, removed any jewelry, and rolled up your sleeves.)

In metro Detroit, Woolly and Co. is the place to go for arm knitting supplies. The store’s own Mammoth line of merino weight yarn (available in 5-pound and 10-ounce balls) is an ideal medium for arm knitting. The 10-ounce Mini Mammoth, shown here, can produce one cowl that’s arm knit in under an hour.

Using the Woolly approach to arm knitting with this bulky weight, pull four arm lengths of yarn from the ball.

Create a slip knot and pull the yarn over your wrist, adjusting the tension. To cast on with your free hand, create a Y-shape with the yarn, wrapping the working yarn around your thumb and the tail between your index and middle fingers. Slide your slip knot hand through the loop on your thumb and then around through the loop between two fingers. Slide the loop off to create your stitch.

Repeat this until you have created six stitches on your arm.

To knit, hold the working yarn with the same arm your stitches are on. Pull your first stitch over your wrist. Slide your opposite hand through the loops to grab the new stitch.

Continue working back and forth between your arms until you’ve almost run out of the yarn, making sure to leave enough to bind off. The same technique for binding off applies with arm knitting as it does with regular knitting: knit two stitches and pull the first stitch over the second and let it fall off the “needle.” Continue to knit, then pull over until all stitches are off the needle. Pull the remaining yarn tail through your final loop.

Seam the outer stitches together on the ends of the knitted piece to create your cowl. Finish by weaving in the ends. For this type of yarn, use a needle felting tool to take the tail into place.

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