With all the other crafting that I’ve done I had most of the tools and requirements on hand.
Jewelry wires (or head pins, either with a loop or a finished end)
needlenose pliers (2 pair makes life a lot easier)
I did decide to go out and purchase some toggle clasp ends. I think that makes a nicer finished look for the knit marker and you don’t have to worry about the wire loop bending on you in cases where wire was used to form the loop that goes over the knitting needles.
I also picked up a free earring pattern from the bead aisle at the local crafty store I was at. The standard dangle earring instruction sheet gives you all the tips and instructions for making a knitting marker.
Once you’ve assembled all the requirements, decide what beads you want to use. I did go a bit overboard and made several different patterns. See the results at http://n2imaginations.com
1. String your selected beads onto the wire/headpins. Be sure to leave yourself almost an inch of wire to work with.
2. Use the needle-nose pliers (round nose helps here) to clasp the wire just above the beads and bend it at a 45 degree angle to form a corner.
3. Use the other pliers to wrap the wire around the first pair to form a loop in the wire/headpin.
4. Thread the toggle clasp onto the wire – this is where you wish you had one more hand to help you.
5. Manipulate the wire to enclose the toggle clasp loop and continue to wrap back around the wire/headpin to circle it just above the last bead. You want more than one circuit around the wire/headpin to ensure it doesn’t come loose later or get snagged on your knitting.
6. Cut off any excess wire and smooth the end as close to wire/headpin as you can to avoid snags.
7. Straighten, if necessary and repeat for as many knit markers as you need. The most I’ve ever used on a knitting project is 8. Usually I only need 1 or 2.
And, I have to say, each time that I finish another round on the project that I’m working on and that fancy knit marker comes around again that I made, it’s a nice little ego-boo. It’s a great perk when I start wondering whether I’m ever going to finish the project that I’m on. I made these stitch markers, I can finish this sweater.
And if you have beads left over after making your markers, check out Lily Chin’s latest beaded knitting book – Knit and Crochet with Beads Lots of ideas on how to use up those other beads.