Today I was working on a knitting project for a doll and needed some stitch markers. As I was using size 2.5mm needles I decided to make some small ones so they were the right size.
Although I have seen some very pretty ones around, I hate those dangling ones that seem to get caught up in the yarn all the time. If I am using fine yarn I don't want to risk it breaking because it gets tangled in the stitch marker! They also seem to reduce my knitting speed.I like them to be as simple as possible.
I often just use those little plastic rings that are used on some bras, but the ones I had around were slightly bigger than I wanted. So I picked out some jewellery jump-rings and chose some small beads which had the hole of about the same size as the wire. I don't like to use big beads because they take up space inside the ring. Small beads look pretty and are functional.
If you don't have any jump-rings the size you need you can just use some fairly thick jewellery wire, cutting it to the size you wish. Long-nosed pliers like the ones I used make it easy to shape it into a circle. You can also use a bigger size knitting needle to give it the right form. Remember that the stitch marker needs to be slightly bigger than the needle you are using so you can easily slip it from one needle to the other while knitting. Too big can be awkward and stretch fine yarn.
So here I picked out some jewellery jump-rings and chose some small beads which had the hole of about the same size as the wire. With a pair of long-nose pliers I opened the ring.
I placed a bead on one end of the wire pushing it almost fully on.
I then bent the wire back into position. putting the open side of the wire into the bead and pulling the bead over the join. I actually used 2 pairs of pliers to do this as I found it easier to grasp and push the wire into shape.
Here is the finished little ring. Looks cute doesn't it? Looks like a dolly ring!
Here I placed the stitch markers on the needle as I started the pattern. If you use different colour beads you can mark different parts.
You may have noticed that I do not glue the beads into place on the wire. If they are a fairly snug fit they do not slip around but stay in their place. Although personally it has never happened to me, if you do knit them into your work by mistake, it would be easy to pull them open and take them out without damaging the knitting! If they are glued you can't do that so easily.
I have been making these for years and they have never come open while knitting.
They are quick and very cheap to make.
I would love to know what you think about my method of making these with no glue.