How to cast on for beginners
Beginner Knitting Lessons, Part 3
Knitting is started from making a foundation row of stitches or initial row of stitches. There are a plenty of methods to cast on the foundation row or in. Each method has its own peculiarities: some allow obtaining more or less stretchable edge, other create various decorative effects. Within the framework of our lessons for the beginners, we'll learn how to cast on in the main way. This method is also called the classic or the basic technique for casting on the foundation row with needles.
A classic cast on technique is the most popular one. It allows making a firm and rather flexible edge which would suit for any pattern. The basic method is quick and convenient. The only drawback regarding this method is that sometimes, especially if casting on many stitches, it may be difficult to estimate the length of the free end of yarn. If run out of yarn, you’ll have to cast on once again.
To estimate the length of the free end, take the yarn and one needle to be used for knitting. Wind the yarn around the needle for 10 times, so that you get a section to cast on 10 stitches (one wind per a stitch). Consequently, measure off the number of sections proportional to the number of stitches to be cast on, plus 15-20 cm.
And so, cast on as follows:
Measure the required length of the free end of strand and press the strand in this point with your point finger and thumb of the right hand. Place the free end of strand in the “away” direction.
Put the strand end going from the ball into your left palm, draw the strand between the point and middle finger of your left hand.
Throw the yarn through the point finger and wrap your left hand thumb from bottom to top. A loop will be created on the thumb. Use your ring finger and little finger to hold the yarn ends put together in your palm.
Introduce two needles put together from bottom to top into the loop formed on your thumb.
Catch the strand resting on your point finger and draw it into the loop.
By moving the yarn strands apart with your point finger and thumb, tighten a stitch on the needles. The stitches should be tightened closely but not too tightly in order to let them move on the needles.
By proceeding with this technique, cast on the necessary amount of stitches.
Train until you start casting on masterfully quickly.