How to Arm Knit a Blanket

We asked expert knitter Mel Porter to show us how to make a chunky merino wool blanket using our arms as the needles.

Last year, Mel Porter delighted our customers and Seasalt teams with workshops across Cornwall, teaching a simple how-to for an arm-knitted wool blanket. Whilst we can’t get together in the same way this festive season, we think her cosy tutorial is perfect for wintery evenings hunkered down at home, and a wonderful celebration of beautiful yarns. Take a look at our film and have a go creating your own beautiful blanket. We’d love for you to stay connected with our creative community and share what you make using #SeasaltArtsClub.

What you’ll need

  • 2kg unspun roving merino wool
  • 2 arms (or giant needles if you prefer)

Casting on

Make a slip knot and place over your right wrist.

Take the yarn attached to your ball of wool and take it behind your left hand (thumb facing towards you), around your hand and between your index finger and thumb.

Slip your right hand palm to palm inside the yarn in your left hand and transfer the stitch to your right wrist. Pull tight but keep loose enough to easily move around.

Repeat this step until you have 12 stitches on your right arm, making sure they’re not too snug on your arm.

Row 1

Hold the working yarn in your right hand. With your left hand, pull the stitch at your right wrist over your right hand.

Take the loop now in your right hand and put it on your left arm. You have now knit your first stitch!

Repeat for all stitches on your right arm so that your left arm has all the stitches and your right arm has none.

Row 2

Now hold the working yarn in your left hand. With your right hand, pull the stitch at your left wrist over your left hand.

Take the loop now in your left hand and put it on your right arm. Repeat for all stitches on your left arm.

Repeat steps for row 1 and row 2, alternating until you have a few lengths left to cast off with.

Casting off

Knit the first two stitches of the row as in previous steps.

Drop the yarn from your hand and pull the first stitch over the second stitch and off your hand. You now have one stitch left on your arm.

Knit another stitch, drop the yarn and pull the second stitch over the third stitch and off your hand. Continue with the row until your have just one stitch left on your arm.

If needed, cut the end from the ball leaving enough yarn to sew the ends together. Pull the tail through the final stitch and tighten to secure.

Caring for your arm-knit blanket

It’s important to felt your blanket to stop pilling.

Fill a bath with warm water and a cap full of hand soap (shampoo also works fine). Soak your blanket, gently squeezing each part in turn. Rinse twice to remove soap. Squeeze as much water out as possible and wrap in an old towel. Ring again in the towel and dry flat over a couple of days.

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