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Make hand-knitted placemats and coasters

24 November 2015, 14:06

Placemat size 20cm diameter

Coasters size 10cm diameter

You will need:

  • 1 x 50g ball of Rowan handknit cotton in Sugar shade no. 303, Bermuda shade no. 324 and Nectar no. 326
  • oddments of contrast coloured DK yarn
  • French knitting doll
  • small crochet hook
  • matching coloured sewing thread

NOTE: French knitting dolls are available at good yarn stores and in the craft and hobby section at toy stores. If you are unable to find one, simply hammer four small tacks into the top of a wooden cotton reel to form a square.


30 sts and 10cm measured over a length of French knitting

How to use a French knitting doll:

1 Make a slip knot, leaving a length of yarn of about 25cm to the end. Attach the knot to one of the ‘nails‘ on the top of the doll and insert the end of the yarn down the hole in the centre.

2 Pull the end of the yarn to make sure the slipknot is secure. Working in a clockwise motion, wind the yarn from the ball around the three remaining ‘nails‘ on the top of the doll.

3 Wind the yarn around the first ‘nail‘ again, above the slipknot. Holding the yarn at the ‘nail‘ with your thumb, slip the yarn with the original knot over the second thread, using the crochet hook. Take the yarn over and off the ‘nail‘. One stitch has been completed.

4 Now take the yarn to the next ‘nail‘, always working in a clockwise motion. Using the crochet hook, slip the hook into the first yarn and bring it over the second yarn and over and off the ‘nail‘. The second stitch has been completed.

5 Continue in this way, winding the yarn around the next ‘nail‘ and making a new stitch until all four ‘nails‘ on the top of the doll have been worked into. One round has been completed.

6 Continue working in rounds by winding the yarn around the ‘nails‘ and removing the yarn at the base of the ‘nail‘ to create a new stitch. Pull the end of the yarn to secure the stitches as you work. You’ll notice once the length of the doll has been worked the French knitting forms a hollow tube.

7 If you need to join in new yarn, tie the two ends together and work the ends away down the centre of the tube.


1 Using the French knitting doll and yarn, knit a length of French knitting 560cm long.

2 Working on a flat surface, wind the French knitting into a coil. Starting at the centre and working outwards, join the coil together with a slipstitch using a matching coloured sewing thread.

3 Referring to the photo and working in a contrast coloured yarn, weave the yarn over and under the coils, starting at the centre. Space the stitches evenly apart around the coil.

4 Make a set of six placemats, working two in each of your three colours. Press the completed placemats with a warm iron over a damp cloth.


Complete as given for the placemats, but working a length of French knitting 140cm long.

Text and image: Ideas magazine

- Woman24


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