Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to all and
may 2011 bring you your
lots of spool knitting
successes and lots of fun!!!!


Monday, November 29, 2010

Toy Knitting Outfit

Toy Knitting Outfit

Milton Bradley Co.
Springfield, Mass.  U. S. A.

Milton Bradley, born in 1836 in Vienna, Maine,
was first interested in lithography as a teenager.
By 1860 he had founded the Milton Bradley
Company and the first color lithography shop
in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Apart from games,  Bradley was
interested in children's education and
learning through play,
and the company also produced
materials for kindergarten children.

One such item was the Toy Knitting

This is box numbered 4348 and is found in
the "Bradley's School Materials and
Books" catalog dated 1921.
Front and back cover shown

Here is the page where it is found - and
another two sets are also mentioned here,
numbers 4195 and 4312.

Next we see the inside of the box (4348).

Oddly, I also have another set by Bradley which
is number 4200 (below). I am only guessing here but
this set could have possibly been made for the
general public. Inside, it has the larger 
spoolknitter which is also mentioned in the number
4195 set above.

This particular box has two of these - was
this set meant to have two? ... it is possible
as it could have been for sharing with a
brother or sister.
(The wooden spool with nails has been added
sometime later.)

So these sets are from the very early 1900's and
that makes them practically 100 years old!

I am so grateful to whoever took care of these sets
 that they remained in great condition.

(Bibliography -
Encyclopedia of Children's
Sewing Collectibles by 
Darlene J. Gengelbach - totally
recommend this book, I love it!)


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Little Mermaids

New Knitting Dolls

These little Mermaid knitting dolls are
as cute as can be.
There are six to the set each
one's hair different from the other.
They have little sparkle dots on
their bases in various colours.
They are newly released here
in Australia, and as far
as I can tell, very limited at present.
They should be more easily available
over the next 12 months.

These are made by Sailing Toys and Gifts Co. Ltd.,
exclusively for Sparkle T -
Made in China.

Curiously, instead of different coloured small balls of
yarn, they have included thin satin ribbon.
The loop tool has a fashioned hook on
its end.

When I find more available, I will
let you know.


Monday, November 15, 2010

Yahoo Spoolknitter Competition

Yahoo Spoolknitter
Christmas Character/Doll Competition

The Yahoo Spoolknitter group are having their
last competition for the year and the
prize for the winner is a
fabulous Bracelet Jewelry 
Spool Knitting Kit
which is very
generously donated by our
wire spoolknitter extraordinaire -
Sharon Hessoun
... author of ...
Wire Knitting on a Spool.
Do check out her website -

Should you wish to
enter, you must become a
member of our spoolknitter group
on Yahoo - link in right hand column
of this blog.
The photo above shows
  all that the lucky winner
will receive and it
also includes the CD of Sharon's book -
Wire Knitting ... on a Spool.
Once you have joined us, all of the
details for the competition will be found
in our Files section.
Competition closes midnight December 2nd!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010


I have been a collector of 
spool knitters for a number of years
now. While I would still consider
myself an amateur/novice collector, there are
still some things you
should notice that would make a lot
of sense when it comes to buying
vintage spool knitters.

I have seen over the past months,
so called vintage spool knitters being
sold on the internet. Yes, they have
that old look about them, but did
they start out originally as spool knitters?

I have in the past spoken of recycling
items like salt & pepper shakers, skittles, or perhaps
turning skipping rope handles into spool
knitters. This is all well and good and I
accept this alternative ... I have done
this myself and have stated
exactly what they had been in
as "past life", purely for my
own collection,
.... but I do not accept
those being sold under false pretences
as unique, rare and very old spool

There is one seller in particular who makes
this claim on certain
listings, and I question this seller as to how
often he/she seems to continually find these 
supposedly rare and very old
spool knitters.

I notice things like the centre core of
the spool knitter as being newly drilled.
The diameter of the core is unusually
larger than normal. While the nails
have been stated as being oxidized, this
is easy to do yourself and nail them
into the top. If the piece is so old then,
wouldn't there be more wear at certain
areas of the so called spool knitter?
The area around the base of
the nails for instance, and also
around the spool knitter where it is held.
Some of the 'so called' spool knitters have
unusual extras or protuberances
like noses, ears, etc.,
so these should be showing signs of wear.
One of these were the chef salt shakers
(Salty and Peppy)
that are very easily recognized.... there are
so many of these that have been made.
The hat had been painted a different colour
which is also so easily done yourself.
The base of the "spool knitter" has
the recognizable concave which is
commonly found in salt & pepper
These are individual pieces also and
do not have a box.

I just want to say to be very aware
when it comes to buying - if they sell
at a low price, then that is fine and as it
should be with its
"past life" noted, but if the buyers do not
know and the piece sells for an
astronomical price, then that is absolutely

Serious collectors, please be aware of this,
 ask the seller lots of questions.
Read the descriptions carefully and check
out all of the photos, ask the seller for lots
more photos.
You do not want to pay ridiculous prices
for a salt shaker!

Please do make comments to me about
this - as I do want to know your thoughts too!


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Strickliesl Magazine

Strickliesl Magazine
Lena Special

A brand new German publication is now available
on the internet (Ebay).
Strickliesl (or Strickliesel,
or Knitting Liesl (spoolknitter)) is a 
Lena Special and is full of spool knitting
patterns both practical
and novel,
to suit just about everyone.
Spool knitting is becoming more
popular as so many more of us are
exploring different textile methods.
Don't forget that you can combine
spool knitting with many other crafts and
also add embellishments to
your creations. 



Tuesday, October 5, 2010

When looking on the internet ............

Knitting Nancy could appear in the least
likely of places, or maybe that is
'images' of Knitting Nancy.
I found this recently when
looking on the internet.
I thought that you may be interested

 You will have to scroll down the page
just a little to Maddy Fraioli and her
needle punch rug -
"My Good Friend Nancy"
You can click on her photo
to see a larger version.

This is one I have that is similar ...


Monday, September 27, 2010

Knitting Nancy gets a Makeover

 (before and after)

Knitting Peter
I had been wanting to give the Spear's Knitting Nancy of
the 1970's, 80's, and 90's a makeover for quite some
(Knitting Nancy is the product name given
to the spool knitters by Spear's Games)
 I have a large number of these common boring 
and hideous bright pink-faced Knitting
Nancies in varying degrees of condition, the one
that I have painted here had had an accident with
nail polish of all things! ... and it had been purchased
for next to nothing.
In the 1920's - 30's, there were both female and
male form Knitting Nancies made by Spear's
of Germany and UK .... the male was called
Knitting Peter (Strick-Peter).
I quite like how he turned out in light
blue top with dark blue pants.
I also like his little expression on
his face!

 Here is the original Spear's
Knitting Peter (right)
of the late 20's/30's.
Don't the two Peter's
make a nice family


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Spoolknitting Box

The prize for the winner of the current Yahoo
Spoolknitter Group Competition is this sweet 
hand-painted wooden box to hold your
spoolknitting accessories in.
It has a wood cut-out of Knitting Nancy
on the front!
The poll is now on to find our winner!
Link to the Yahoo Spoolknitter Group can be found
in the right-hand column of this blog.
Maybe we will see you there!

(Sept 13 ... now closed, but
we will be having more competitions!)


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Anchor Arista

A fabulous booklet to look for if you are interested
in jewellery/necklace designs is the Anchor Intermezzo.
There are five different designs to make using
the Anchor Arista threads.

Below is an Anchor Arista Jewellery kit
- others are available.

There is a necklace and matching ring to
make from the kit.

You can look at the Coats Anchor website for these booklets and
jewellery kits plus some beading sites also have them.


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Having Some Fun!

I found a fun photo site and
had to try some with Nancy
as the model.

I love this one!

Very Warhol!
What do you think?

o o o o
o o o o

Saturday, May 29, 2010

New Knitting Dolls

Collectors of spool knitters
are now being catered for very
well - there are more new knitting
dolls for us to enjoy!

We also find a repaint of a
knitting doll - the Japanese doll.


These new knitting dolls are Made in China
with a slightly different version of a box
from a previous set of knitting dolls.
Remember those in their bright yellow
boxes with six different knitting
dolls - Eskimo, Japanese doll, Indian boy,
Indian girl, farm boy in blue
overalls, and another boy in red overalls?
These sets of dolls are
also found in a "knitting Nancy"
reproduction box by Heritage Toys
and Games.
(Both these sets in"yellow" and
boxes are still being sold -
check out ebay.)

The wool supplied in the new
boxes are from Germany.
The loop tools are wooden
with a different colour ball
end. While the box remains
virtually the same, the various
craft shops, craft companies, toy
shops, and toy companies put
their own brand name/retail information
sticker on the boxes.
I wonder what we will discover next
about these sets!


Saturday, May 22, 2010

What is it?

Ted graciously agreed
to model this little
spool knitting accessory
for me...
a novelty apple core
cord minder.
It is one part of the
prize for the current
Yahoo Spoolknitter Group
Tea Cosy Competition.
If you want to be involved,
HURRY! ... you
only have until
May 29th before
it closes!


Friday, May 14, 2010

Knitting Grandma

I recently painted this
Knitting Grandma spool knitter.
Following the original J W Spear
Knitting Nancy, she is knitting
on four double pointers
just like Nancy.


Monday, May 10, 2010

Here's Humpty!

My blog mascot!
(with spool knit version)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

La Redoute, Roubaix

To appreciate the importance of this little tricotin,
we go back a little into the history of Roubaix, France.

Roubaix, in the region Nord Pas de Calais, became
a city with a booming textile and wool industry in the
19th century. There were 200 mills operating
around the city.
Around the 1920's a catalogue/mail-order
industry developed selling wools, patterns,
Because the town was still reeling from the
effects of WWI, one part of the plan
to get the wool industry back on its feet
was a promotional campaign - our
little "La Redoute" tricotin was offered
in these catalogues and sample leaflets
to help to sell more wool.

We find this tricotin still available
over time up to the 1950's.

In the 1960's onwards, the industry suffered
a decline being due to cheap imports which
also affected the British industry.

The 1970's up to the 2000's there were
thousands of job losses and buildings became

However, Roubaix has now been "reborn" and
today we find, among others, fashion houses,
fashion and textile designers, marketing and
communications and home shopping companies,
and engineering colleges and teaching centres.

La Redoute district in the city 
of Roubaix, is now an
important mail-order
centre (La Redoute-Redcats, Damart,
Camaïeux and Phildar)
and also the "3 Suisses" wool company
is still in operation, creating wools, patterns,
catalogues, etc.

So, this little tricotin with its 
important role in advertising,
is an extremely
collectible spoolknitter to look out for!


Friday, March 12, 2010

The Collection of Christine Painsonneau

 The collection of
Christine Painsonneau of 
"Les Tricotins de Jardinette"
was featured on TV France
on March 8, 2010.

Click HERE to watch this
short but fabulous video.


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Easter Egg Spoolknitter Prize

There is a new competition currently on
over at Yahoo Spoolknitter.

The "Easter Egg" Spoolknitter
pictured below is one part of the

Hop on over and see what
it is all about!



Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sunday, January 17, 2010

New Discovery!!


It appears there is yet another
"totally different" 
Spears Games Knitting Nancy lurking
around somewhere in the world.

I discovered recently via the internet
that there was another Knitting
Nancy produced for the French

While the discovery was
only a box and it was missing the
original Knitting Nancy,
and that I would probably
never be able to possess it,
I thought, well then, I could
paint my own.

So with an image of the box top
I came up with this below -

(only needs the nails which will
be put in soon) 

(say Ay-i-sha
.... and also spelled A'isha,
Aisha, Ayesha and Ayisha)
is an Arabic female name.
Could it be because of the
Arabic name that she is
She would date from the late 1920's
because of the statement
regarding her new staples
(pointes en arc).

Though I still prefer
the "Knitting Nancy" to
"Aïcha", I am quite
fond of my
little reproduction.


(Now here she is all

I wonder if there are
others "out there"?!!!!


Friday, January 8, 2010

Yahoo Spoolknitter Group Birthday


The above is the Yahoo Spoolknitter
Group Home Page notice for the
current competition....
entries close Jan 21st.

You are most welcome to join in
the spoolknitting fun! 

 Click on .....

Yahoo Spoolknitter Group

Here is a larger photo of the
spoolknitter "cake"
I hope it looks good enough
to eat!!

The spoolknitter
has six posts (nails) and is also 
decorated with flowers on top.

Above is the other part of the prize -
a "Take-a-long" Spoolknitting Bag
for your spoolknitting projects.
The outer pockets are handy for
those necessary bits and pieces
needed for working on your project.

So take a look at Yahoo Spoolknitter
and join in the fun - 
you gotta be in it to win it!! 

Added Jan 10th - 
I have some of you confused ....
this is not my blog birthday but a
post for the Yahoo Spoolknitter Group's
3rd Birthday!
We are both called "Spoolknitter".

But thankyou for your congrats
anyway  .... !!!



Thursday, January 7, 2010

Babushka, Spiderman and Beefeater

These Knitting Dolls (spoolknitters) are newly made
from the later part of 2009.
They are Made in China by
Sailing Toys & Gifts Co. Limited
(see ToysLink for another
range of knitting doll with same

The very colourful set of six Babushka
(product spelling) knitting dolls come in
red, purple, orange, blue, green, and pink.


There are also another two new spoolknitters
from the same company.
The Spiderman and Beefeater each called
a Knitting Boy, I would say are
especially made for the
young males who enjoy spool knitting.

Below are the front and back
views of the Spiderman spoolknitter.

These spoolknitters are very well
made and would be an excellent addition
to your collection.