Knit on Provisional Cast-on
April 20, 2011
Provisional Cast On in Action (sneak peek at April's Project)
Sometimes the cast on is as important as the stitch pattern. Sometimes you need an invisible cast on; sometimes you need to knit from your cast on flawlessly without the tell-tale ridge row that comes from picking up previously knitted stitches. Enter the Provisional Cast On which is an invisible cast on that can be knit from in both directions leaving you with a flawless knitted piece. Most often this cast on is created using waste yarn and working yarn knotted together. You cast on your desired number of stitches and knit on. Once you are ready to pick up your other cast on stitches, you carefully unknot and remove your waste yarn and pick up and knit your stitches. You must be careful because every other stitch from this cast on will be twisted so you must knit it through the back loop. A trifle compared to how useful this cast on is. You can match your cast on to your bind off by picking up the stitches and binding off a second time, so in actuality you have 2 bind offs instead of a cast on and a bind off. You can create mirror images for scarves and other luxury items where perfection is desired. I incorporated this wonderful technique in the upcoming April Free Knitting Pattern Download (so take notes).
However wonderful this cast on it, it can be better. "How could anything so awesome get any better, unless Michael Buble were holding your yarn while you cast on. Surely that is the only way to make it better!" you might exclaim. Alas, no Michael's were employed to make this technique better but only a cable needle. I substituted a flexible cable needle in for the waste yarn. This enables the knitter to forgo unknotting yarn and pick up stitches. When the time comes to knit from your cast on, you need only slide your stitches onto your needle and knit on. It is so simple and wonderfully easy. You can see how I pull it off in this handy video.
Don't forget to tune in later this month for this cast on in action in the April Free Knitting Pattern Download. Yarn used in this blog post was the delicious Lion Brand Recycled Cotton to be featured in this month's pattern as well.
You can catch sneak peeks of upcoming patterns and project by following me on twitter @tdangermiller
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