Knitting, tutorial

Casting on

Let’s do this.

We’re ready to get knitting now, but before we can start churning out interesting swatches, funky scarves, jumpers or anything else, we need to get the stitches onto the needles in the first place. This is called casting on, and as with virtually everything else in life and knitting, there is more than one way to do it.

Sometimes, a particular pattern will require a particular cast on, such as a tubular; cable or even an invisible cast on (yeah, you heard me).  However, at the moment, you don’t need to worry about any of that. I am going to show you my preferred basic cast on.

I mostly use the longtail cast on. Click here for the video tutorial. This is simply because it is the way my Mum taught me. It is the method that tends to be used with continental knitting and the reason my mum uses it is because her mum taught her and she was German so knit in the continental style. My English grandmother uses the English style cast on, and I will be preparing a video tutorial for that soon.


English and Continental what?

Yes, I am still talking knitting and not breakfasts. There are many different styles of knitting but the two that you will probably encounter the most are;

  1. English style, sometimes called ‘throwing’. This is because you hold the working yarn in your right hand and ‘throw’ it around the needle.

  2. Continental style knitting (or European knitting), or ‘picking’, because the working yarn is held in your left hand and you ‘pick’ it up using the right hand needle.

Most people have a preference, and many only ever stick to the one style. I mostly use the English style because that is the way I learned, but I can knit in the continental style too and do practice it fairly regularly.

Back to casting on; once you have had a good practice, cast on 20 stitches and that’s it for now!

Next time we will actually start knitting, I promise!



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