What is nalbinding?
What is nalbinding? Before knitting or crocheting, stretchable textiles with nalbinding (also spelled nalebinding, naalbinding or nalbinding) were produced. The oldest samples from Nalebinding date from 300 BC. BC, and examples of art were found in Peru, Egypt and Scandinavia. It is sometimes referred to as Viking knitting because it was common in many Scandinavian cultures. It is still practiced today, both by historical relaxers, craft enthusiasts and craftsmen in Peru and Scandinavia.
Nalbinding is done with a single needle, a large flat needle with one eye – Nalbinding is possible with a darning needle. Short lengths of yarn are formed into rows of interlocking loops that are built up in a spiral row by row to produce tubular pieces of fabric that can be made into gloves, socks, hats, etc.
There are many different stitch bindings, each giving a different look to a finished piece. Many of these engravings have been carefully reconstructed from archaeological finds – for example the York engraving, which was reconstructed from a 10th century sock found during excavations at Coppergate in York. Stitches are identified by a code (Hansen classification), which indicates whether the thread runs under or over the previous stitches. For example, the Oslo stitch is UO / UOO, which means that the working yarn is passed under the first and over the second stitch, changes direction and then runs under, over and over the next stitch. All tie stitches can be classified in this way.
In contrast to knitting or crocheting, the entire working thread is pulled through the stitch during processing. This means that short lengths of yarn are used, which are put together in the course of the work. For this reason, the Nale binding is usually done with wool or other animal fibers, which can be easily and quickly connected with a bandaged felted.
Nalebinding is a relaxing and rewarding craft. Although it is more time-consuming than knitting or crocheting, the finished fabric is generally denser, warmer and stronger than knitting or crocheting. Learning the Nalebind also brings with it the feeling of reconnecting with a primitive craft and making useful and attractive garments in the same way as our ancestors.
Nalbinding is easy to learn, but it can be difficult to learn from pictures and explanations alone. Fortunately, some nalbinding video tutorials are available online.