Monday, January 3, 2011

Knitting 101: Lesson Two {Casting On}

Knitting lessons continue...

Now that you have mastered the slipknot, let's get to work on casting stitches onto your needle.  You need to cast stitches onto your needle before you can begin knitting.  The number of stitches you cast on determines how wide your knitting will be.  You can continue working with the yarn with which you learned the slipknot.  For this lesson, you will need one of the needles I told you to get yesterday.  I again uploaded a video for you to watch.  Remember that I am right-handed, so if you are left-handed, you will need to reverse your hands for each step (unless you want to be a right-handed knitter).  Please excuse the shaky camera and the news stories in the background.  Since you have to see this from my perspective, having my husband record didn't work (looking at it backwards wouldn't help anyone).  I was wearing a polo over a long-sleeve t-shirt, so what I did was unbutton my polo to the last button, stick the camera between the two shirts, and used my amazing slouch skills to record my hands from that angle.  My husband thought this was hilarious, and threatened to start his own blog with all the ridiculous things I do for my blog.  The things I will do for crafting...

Well let's get started.  I find it easy to stick the flat end of the needle between my knees to hold while I cast on.  See the video first, then follow the directions and pictures to try it yourself.
  1. Begin by creating a slipknot.
  2. Slip the slipknot onto your needle.  The tail should be on the right, and the working yarn should be on the left.  The knot should be away from your body.
  3. Hold the tail in your right hand.  Weave it over your pointer finger, under the next two fingers, and over your pinky.
  4. Hold the working yarn in your left hand.  Wrap the yarn around your thumb.  Look at the palm of your hand.  Take the yarn from the needle, put it behind your thumb, then wrap counter-clockwise around the thumb.  Pull the yarn down to your palm and hold it with your pinky.
  5. Now that you have your grip, stick the point of the needle through the loop of yarn around your left thumb.  Take the needle up through the loop, tracing your thumb from your wrist to its tip.
  6. Take the yarn in your right hand and wrap it around the needle counter-clockwise so the yarn slides down the needle above the yarn loop on your left hand.
  7. At this point, you might want to stick a finger from your right hand on all your loops to stabilize before the next step.
  8. Lift the yarn in your left hand over the needle and off.
  9. Pull your thumb out, and pull tight.  Make sure the new knot is on the same side as the other knot.
  10. Repeat steps 3-9 until you have enough stitches for your project.  If you are just practicing, continue until the needle is full, pull off, pull out, and start again.


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