Sunday, December 7, 2008

Provisional Cast-on, Part Two

Well, I don't know about you, but that was a much longer pause than I had planned on. My camera, which I assume is to take pictures and videos when and as I demand, does not hold the same supposition.

So, as previously planned, go fetch yarn, plus waste yarn, and appropriately-sized needles. And watch...

Holding the two yarns together and leaving a 6-8" tail, tie the two yarns into a slip knot. Do not use an over-hand knot as it will be harder to take your knot apart later.

Looking at the thumb side of your hand, hold the yarn in your left hand with the waste yarn coming off of your index finger, and the working yarn under your thumb. and controlling the tension of these two yarns by holding them into your palm with your other fingers, just as you do for a long-tail cast-on. Hold the slip knot in your right hand, and your needle in your right hand, pointing towards your left hand. The two yarns should form a triangle between the knot in your right hand, and the upper waste yarn and lower working yarn held in your left hand.

Begin the cast on by
1 - putting your needle in between the two yarns, from front to back. Bring the needle under the working yarn from behind, and catch the working yarn with your needle to form the first stitch.
2- Bring the needle up and over the top of the waste yarn towards the back, and down behind both yarns. Bring the needle under the working yarn to the front, and catch the working yarn with the needle to form the second stitch, pulling this stitch behind the waste yarn, over the top of the waste yarn, and back to the front.

Repeat those two motions until you have the required number of cast-on stitches. Cut the waste yarn from its ball, leaving a 6" tail so that it doesn't unravel from the knitting. Proceed to knit as usual.

If you look carefully at the cast-on stitches and the waste yarn on your needle,before you start knitting, you will see that they are exactly the same as the Italian Tubular cast on. That, too, could be worked with waste yarn in the same manner as this provisional cast-on, but working the first two rows by knitting the knits and slipping the purls wyif, before launching into the K1, P1 rib as previously described.

With the provisional cast-on, when it is time to go back to the cast-on edge and begin knitting in the opposite direction, simply thread a needle 1-2 sizes smaller than you used to cast on with through the stitches where they are held on the waste yarn. Untie the slip knot from the cast-on, and remove the waste yarn from the stitches. Using the correct sized needle for your pattern, knit off of the smaller needle and proceed with your pattern.

And so goes the second of our three identical cast-ons...

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