Monday, November 23, 2009

A catalog of cast-ons

Wow, I had no idea there are so many ways you can cast-on a knitting project. I started my journey this morning watching a video about cable cast-ons and soon found a gazillion other options. I need a cast-on catalog! So here goes.

Knitted Cast-On: If you already know how to knit, this is a great way for beginners to cast-on.

Long-Tail Cast-On: The ubiquitous, multi-purpose way to start knitting.

Cable Cast-On: Works well when you need a row that doesn't have a lot of give or stretch - like for a buttonhole.

Rib Cable Cast-On: Similar to the cable cast-on, this method is perfect for 1x1 ribbing.

Provisional Cast-On: A means to create cast-on stitches that can be easily removed later so you can pick up the stitches and keep knitting. My favorite way to do this is with a crocheted chain.

Estonian Cast-On: I actually learned this method from Nancy Bush last summer at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. What a great class! And what a great cast-on for socks.

Channel Island Cast-On: This method gives you a pretty, tricot-like edging.

German Twisted Cast-On: Perfect for situations where you need a stretchy cast-on, like for socks or a neck opening. This is my personal favorite.

Italian or Tubular Cast-On: Looks complicated! But apparently gives a very stretchy edge as well.

Turkish Cast-On: A very fast and simple means to cast-on for socks.

Mobius Cast-On: Cat Bordhi calls this a magical cast-on and she's right! Complete with double-rings of knitting and triangles and train tracks and much more, she uses this cast-on for mobius knitting.

Do you know of a cast-on method that is not listed here? Please let me know and I'll add it to this list. One can never have too much love, too many shoes, or too many ways to cast-on!


  1. I only do 2 CO methods..Long tail and cable.
    I love knitting with Cascade 220 Heathers yarn and in using it I HAD to find another CO besides long tail which just did not work for that thinner worsted looked too loopy.
    So that is how I began to use the Cable which I love. Regular worsted and Heavier I always go with LT, though.
    I notice that there are some patterns in my pattern stash which call for provisional CO. That is next in line for me to learn.
    Thanks for posting these handy and useful videos.

  2. Thanks for this Julie, I knew just about every cast-ons here except for the Estonian cast-on, another tool in my cast-on tool box! Thanks so much!


    1. The only cast on I do is the crochet cast on. I have not learned any other one

  3. No, girl, thank you - for reading!

  4. The multi-coloured braided cast on is another unusual, but really pretty cast on.

  5. Tammy, it is indeed. I've done that cast on for a couple of hats and mittens I've made. Thanks for reading my blog!

  6. OMG I FOUND THE HOLY GRAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Thanks so much for the videos.

    Is there a bind off to match the fine edge of the cable cast on?

  8. I would like to thank you for this selection of cast ons. I'm new to the knitting world and was wondering how many different ways there is to cast on. I thought the long tail cast on was the only way but now I know better. thank you!!

  9. Thank you for providing some new options. I especially like the Estonian and Channel Island cast on. They will look great on socks, fingerless gloves and even mittens.

  10. There is a craftsy class with 40 cast on and off methods.

  11. Hi, What about the waitress cast on? The new one to me is the Channel Islands cast on. Thank you so much I will saved them as reminders. Thank you