My Take on the Cable Cast-on

There are a lot of different cast-on methods out there but I have to admit that the cable cast-on is my all time favorite. I use it about 95% of the time and I loooove the way it looks. Recently, I happened to watch a video of someone performing this technique (sorry, I don’t remember the precise video) and I got all hot and bothered about it–she was doing it wrong! Gack! Once I calmed down a bit, I realized, that no–she wasn’t doing it wrong, that was probably the most common way to do it–I was the one doing it wrong, er, differently. Anyway, I still really love how it looks so I thought I’d share it with you today. It’s not terribly different or difficult but if you are knitting one of my patterns and you want exactly the same effect, here’s how!

No big surprise: start with a regular slip knot and place on your left needle.

With your right needle (not shown) knit into the single loop, pull the new stitch out to the right and without twisting, simply place it on the left needle. Yay! you have 2 stitches now. This is one of the most basic ways to cast on with 2 needles and you could just continue knitting into the last stitch and placing it on the left needle until you have as many stitches as you want.

BUT NO. We’re not going to do that. That would be BORING. Instead, we are going to insert the right needle tip IN BETWEEN the two stitches, grab the working yarn into a stitch, pull it out to the right and place that onto the left needle.

Repeat this method of making new stitches by only inserting needle in between the last 2 stitches until you have as many stitches as desired. Make sure that when you extend the new stitch out to the right you don’t give it a half or full twist.

And..3rd stitch completed and placed on the left needle.

This is what it looks like from the right side. Now isn’t that a handsome bottom edge? I just love it. This cast-on is not terrifically stretchy, so have a care to make your new stitches nice and loose. If you are casting on for project that is knit in the round, be aware that the wrong side looks a bit different.

Here is the wrong side: still an attractive bottom, but capped by purl bumps. Sometimes I don’t care and just go ahead and join my work in the round after the cast-o row and then this is what shows on the right side of the project. If that’s what you do, be aware that the last 2 stitches in the cast-on round want to hang up on each other when you join in the round–be careful working them on the next round. However, if I’m working in the round and I want the right side of the cast-on round to show on the right side of the piece, I will turn and knit back for row two and only THEN join in the round. Doing that makes it looks like a jog or divot in the edge but when you sew in your yarn tails when you’re all finished, you can just use the tail of the yarn to cinch that jog together and no-one will be the wiser.

Wasn’t that easy? And super neat looking? Give it a try on your next project!


3 thoughts on “My Take on the Cable Cast-on

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