How to Make a Twisted Cord to Finish Knitting

Preparing to Make Twisted Cord

The Spruce / Sarah E. White

Overview
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 1 twisted cord
  • Skill Level: Beginner

Making a twisted cord is a quick and easy way to add a cord or strap to a knitting project. You can make them any size you need, from a cord on a baby bootie to a strap for a purse. They can be used in much the same way you'd use an I-cord, but they're a lot faster to work with since there's no actual knitting involved.

To get started, decide how long and how thick you want your finished cord to be. A rough estimate is that your finished cord will be about 1/4 the length of the yarn you start with. (For example, the cord shown in this tutorial started as 2 yards long, or about 72 inches, and ended up about 18 inches long as the finished cord.)

Each piece of yarn is folded in half, twisted, and folded on itself again. Using two lengths as shown in the picture gives you a cord that's eight strands thick. You can use more or fewer pieces depending on the thickness you need for your desired application. Once you've cut the yarn to the proper length, tie all the pieces together loosely at one end.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Stable object to hold yarn in place (chair post or doorknob, for example)

Materials

  • Yarn of desired length and color

Instructions

  1. Secure Yarn for Looping

    Fold the yarn strands in half and loop them over something to hold them in place while you twist them.

    Ideas for Objects to Securely Loop Yarn

    Luckily, you don't need fancy tools to help you twist your cord. Use a post on a chair or table, a doorknob, a friend's finger, or whatever else you have handy. This step is essential to getting your cord properly twisted.

    The yarn is placed around a chair peg in preparation for twisting
    The Spruce / Sarah E. White
  2. Twist the Cord

    Start by stretching the yarn out to its full length (still folded in half) and begin twisting. Continue to twist consistently in the same direction.

    As you go, the yarn will tighten up and begin to look more like one piece instead of several strands of yarn being twisted together.

    Step three of making a twisted cord
    The Spruce / Sarah E. White
  3. Add Another Twist

    1. When your yarn looks nice and twisted and feels like it can't take much more of the pressure you're putting on it without turning into a big knotted mess, slide the loop off whatever's been holding it.
    2. Keep holding the other ends of the yarn in your hand and allow the cord to fold back on itself. It will naturally twist on itself and make a nice looking twisted cord.
    3. If there are spots in your cord where the tension is a little uneven, you can smooth them out with your hands.
    The cord after the second twist has been added
    The Spruce / Sarah E. White
  4. Finish the Twisted Cord

    You'll notice you have an end of the cord that's a bit of a mess with all your yarn ends and the loop that was on the end of your chair or doorknob. You may need to add a bit more twist here to make the end look consistent with the way the rest of the cord appears.

    Finish your twisted cord by threading the yarn ends through the loop and tie it all into a neat little knot.

    Trim all but a tiny bit of the loose ends, leaving enough so that the knot won't come undone. You're now ready to attach it to your project.

    Finished twisted cord
    The Spruce / Sarah E. White