Adventures in Nalbinding


Nalbinding, Nailbinding, Nalebinding, Nålbinding, Needlebinding.

Whatever you want to call it.. It is a precursor to knitting and crochet, and typically referred to as “Viking” but there have been examples of it found all over the world. I read somewhere that it is thought to be about 6500 years old. Don’t quote me on any of that. In fact, I will save you the time, and you can check out the Wikipedia page on it right here.

I should actually title this post “Frustrations in Nalbinding”


Because holy crap you guys is this confusing. Learning to knit was easy, I found some awesome YouTube tutorials and regained the memories of my grandma’s teaching me how to knit. I experimented with cables and knitting in the round, and it was all fun times, even when I screwed it up…

My viking blood is not helping me on this one though… loops and knots and counting those loops, and I just keep ending up with a pile of crap that is not save-able because its just a bunch of yarn knotted onto itself… After some initial frustration with finding a decent YouTube video showing how to do this ancient craft, I think I have found one that makes sense to my brain… But there is a serious lack of decent beginner tutorials on YouTube, so if you are a teacher-y charismatic nalbinder with good English, you should think about making some tutorial videos on YouTube.

I really want to figure this out, so I will hopefully keep on trying. This seems like a much more cat-owner friendly craft, since you need only short pieces of yarn.


I’m starting to see some pattern in my mess of knots, so I think I just need to persevere past this first little bump in the road and it will start to make sense. Figuring out the tension situation should help me…

I think this might be one of those things I decide to learn and make one thing and then be done with it… I hope not, but it seems to be heading down that road.

Okay, so after some beginning frustration, I have started to understand a little better. Key word being “started”… I’ll try to keep you posted on my progress. I may have to learn to crochet first. Most tutorials are based on the idea of you already knowing crochet…

Here is where I stand in my progress thus far:


Wish me luck on figuring this shit out…

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4 thoughts on “Adventures in Nalbinding

    1. My best friend is a LARPer too, but if you aim to nalbind some clothing, you may want to start soon. This shit takes forever! I’m thinking that I’ll end up making a toque (that’s a beanie if you aren’t Canadian).

      1. I’m Australian, so it’s glad you told me haha.
        It sounds tedious haha. Like embroidery. I still haven’t finished the embroidery on a dress I made for LARP. Urgh

  1. Ive never heard of this before. It never stops amazing me how many different yarn crafts there are. I don’t think I’d get on with lots of short bits of yarn though (it would definitely end in a large ugly knot) so I’ll leave the trying up to you.

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