How to Knit the I-Cord

It’s easier than you think!


I have not thoroughly researched this, but I’ve heard that the i-cord got its name from Elizabeth Zimmerman who said that it’s short for idiot cord because any idiot could do it! 🙂

I-cords are great for making purse handles, adding decoration to garments, and in the case of A Project in Sheep’s Clothing, a drawstring.

In this video, I show you how to knit an i-cord: 

Steps for Knitting an I-cord

  1. Using double pointed or circular needles, cast on the specified number of stitches.
  2. Slide your stitches to the other end of the needle
  3. Knit across your stitches
  4. Repeat steps 2 & 3 until you i-cord is as long as you want it
  5. Bind of like normal OR use a darning needle to pass the tail through the live stitches and pull tight.

If you drop your stitches, pick them up starting or ending with the working yarn. If the working yarn is at the top, slide them to the other end of the needle and continue knitting.

In theory, you can do an i-cord with any number of stitches, though it is limited by the fact that you are stranding the yarn from the last stitch to the first stitch and if you have a lot of stitches that strand would be long.  Therefore, most i-cords are 3 or 4 stitches.

A Project in Sheep’s Clothing would be a great project for practicing i-cords. And this pattern is felted, so even if you make mistake, the felting process will hide it. 🙂

Purchase the pattern on Ravelry or join our A Project in Sheep’s Clothing Knit Along, where we guide you through each step of the pattern with detailed online lessons. Check it out at

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