Learn Something New: The Crochet Cast On

The Crochet Cast On from the new Knitting Daily video, 45+ Knitted Cast Ons and Bind Offs with Ann Budd

I was lucky enough to take my friend Ann Budd’s Sock Summit class, Beginnings and Endings, all about cast ons and bind offs. She’s turned that class into a new DVD, 45+ Knitted Cast Ons and Bind Offs with Ann Budd.

You’ll learn that there are more ways to cast on/bind off than you ever imagined, and you’ll learn how to knit them all! Ann also teaches you when to use each technique and why it works on some projects better than others.

As I was watching the video, I was reintroduced to the crochet cast on. Hello, old friend! I learned this cast on knitting when I first started. One of my knitting group friends used it a lot and I liked how easy and fast it was, as well as the part where you didn’t have to estimate your tail length. I’m still terrible at that!

I abandoned this method for the more versatile long-tail cast on, but when I saw the crochet method in Ann’s video, I remembered it fondly.

This cast on looks like a chain, which is probably why it’s also known as the chain-edge cast on. It matches the standard bind off (knit two stitches, pass the right over the left), and it’s great to use on something like a washcloth or a scarf, where you want the cast-on row to match the bind-off row.

To teach you the crochet cast on, I took some screen shots from the video.

Step 1. Tie a slip knot on a crochet hook. (Choose a hook that matches your yarn weight. For worsted, choose a size G.) Step 2. Hold your needle next to the crochet hook, on top of your working yarn. Step 3. Use the crochet hook to grab the working yarn.
Step 3b. Pull the yarn through the loop on the hook. You’ll see the first stitch cast on. Step 4. Take the working yarn to the back, moving it between the needle and the hook.

In Step 3, notice how Ann is holding both the needle and the yarn tail in her left hand. This is essential for getting the correct tension, for making sure that the tail doesn’t flop around and get in the way! It might look a little fiddly, but when you’re casting on, you’ll notice that you automatically figure out how to manipulate both the needle and the tail. If you don’t, you’ll find it hard to work the cast on.

With this video in your library, you’ll never be caught short again when a pattern says “use the Channel Island cast on,” or some other cast on or bind off that you don’t have memorized. Download 45+ Knitted Cast Ons and Bind Offs with Ann Budd or pre-order the workshop on DVD.

Next time I talk about this video, I’ll share a bind-off technique!


P.S. What’s your go-to cast-on? Leave a comment and let us know!

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