Do the Dewdrop (cast-on, that is!)

    
Lace Stockings by Faina Goberstein

Sometimes a pattern is so special, it just begs to be knit. Faina Goberstein's Lace Stockings is one of those patterns. The socks are just gorgeous, from tip to toe. They're knitted from the top down, with a unique cast-on and a small geometric lace cuff that includes a strand of elastic thread to keep the stockings in place.

The Lace Stockings are knit from Bijou Basin's super-luxurious sock yarn, Tibetan Dream. It's a yak down-nylon blend that's softer than cashmere. Yes, it's a splurge, but I've felt it, and I promise you'll fall in love with it as much as I did!

This special yarn is not only incredibly soft, but it's also durable, which you definitely need in a sock yarn. The yak content makes Tibetan Dream warmer than wool; a bonus for these chilly winters we're having. One more thing about this yarn that makes it distinctive is that it's hypoallergenic—perfect for those of you who are allergic to wool!

Faina's Lace Stockings are the perfect pattern to pair with Tibetan Dream. The special details in these socks start from the moment they're cast on. Faina uses the dewdrop cast-on, which produces a pretty detail from the get-go. I've used the dewdrop cast-on, and it's easy and fun, and the result is so pretty. Here's how you do it:

The Dewdrop Cast-On

    
Closeup of the dewdrop cast-on

This cast-on, a variation of the long-tail method, groups stitches in pairs of two on the needles (be sure and work each stitch individually on the next row) The result is a fancy picot-type edge.

Here's how you work the dewdrop cast-on:

Leave a long tail, about 2 inches for each stitch to be cast on. Fold the tail into fourths and place the needle into the fold closest to the end of the tail that is connected to the ball (Figure 1).

Position the yarn so that the quadrupled part (tail) is over your left thumb and the single strand coming from the ball is under your left index finger, as for the long-tail method (Figure 2). Hold the tip of the short tail against the needle with your right index finger to keep it from slipping.

*Bring the needle under the first group on your thumb, around the top of the first strand on your index finger, then back through the loop on your thumb, just as for the long-tail method (Figure 3).

    

Kathleen's knitted phone
case, with the dewdrop
cast-on
at the top

Slip the yarn off your thumb and rewrap it in the opposite direction, then insert the needle under the four strands from the inside of the thumb loop, around the single strand of yarn on your finger, and then back under the same four strands on your thumb to cast on another stitch (Figure 4).

Repeat from * for the desired number of stitches.

—From The Art of Seamless Knitting, by Faina Goberstein

My effort working the dewdrop cast-on is at left. I worked it at the top of my phone case, just to add that special touch.

Faina's socks are so stunningly beautiful, we thought we'd host a knit-along with Faina! You'll be able to ask her questions as she guides you through knitting your very own pair of Lace Stockings. Register today—the knit-along starts on March 31.

Cheers,

P.S. What's your favorite luxury yarn? Share it with us in the comments!

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