So finally, the part that we all have been waiting for. Lets start to knit!
Lesson 3: Casting on in the round (and starting your project!)
So to begin with, casting on in the round is no different than casting on to straight needles. So if you have managed to cast on a straight for that scarf, you already know how to cast on in the round.
Your weapon, a 16″ US #8 (5 mm) circular needle in this case will look something like this:
For those who are entirely new to casting on, here are a few steps, tips and tricks.
- Make a slip knot, leaving a long tail of yarn*.
*I don’t have a highly technical way of estimating the amount of tail to leave, I am a bit of a sucker for trial and error. For those that want to be a bit more precise, cast on for about 10 stitches and then unravel them. The length of yarn you need for 10 stitches can then be multiplied to estimate the length of yarn for more.
The Yarn Math: (length of yarn for 10 stitches)*(96/10) = approximate length of yarn for 96 stitches (the number I am to cast on for the Adult Short size).
- After making the initial slip knot, continue to cast on the number of stitches required for your project, again in this case, this is 96 stitches.
- After casting on all stitches, your work should look something like the photo below. The right hand needle (working needle) is determined by where the working yarn is attached.
Instead of turning your work (what you would do on straight needles, we want to connect our last stitch to our first stitch to knit in the round.
- Be careful not to twist your cast on row before connecting in the round! Twisting your cast on row might look something like the photo below. Note where the arrow is pointing. That is where the twist is! If you follow the bottom edge of the knitting, it should never wrap around.
- Insert a stitch marker onto your needle in your right hand (the one with the ends of yarn attached) before inserting your right hand needle, with yarn held behind, from the front to the back of your first stitch on your left hand needle.
- Normally when knitting, you would only wrap the working yarn around the right (working) needle, but for knitting in the round where size doesn’t matter too much, I like to use both ends, working and tail, for my first stitch. This helps with the stretch factor when knitting in the round over the first row as well as helps secure your end. Wrap both ends around the working needle and pull the loops through the working stitch, which can now be slid off the left hand needle. You have made your first stitch!
- The purl! Bring your yarn to the front of the working needle and insert the needle into your next stitch from back to front. Wrap your yarn around the right needle and pull it back through the loop, sliding the old stitch off of the left needle.
- The pattern calls for a 1×1 rib stitch. This means that you knit one, purl one and keep repeating that to the end of your row. This requires an even number of stitches, which we have! Continue knitting one then purling one until you reach your stitch marker. This is the end of row 1!
- Slip your stitch marker from your left needle to your right needle. (Do this every time you reach your marker)
- For the first stitch only of row two, we will be knitting two stitches together (K2TOG). It is done much like it sounds. With yarn held in back, insert the right needle from front to back of both stitches. Wrap the yarn around your right needle and pull through both stitches on the left hand needle, slipping the two old stitches off of the left hand needle.
- Continue in your 1×1 rib pattern for approximately 1.5 inches. It should look something like this:
Thank you for following along with lesson 3!
We will continue with Lesson 4: The body of your work and use of stitch markers.