Channel Island Cast-On
The Channel Island cast-on makes a decorative picot edging that’s also elastic but firm. This cast-on was originally used on the hems of fisherman sweaters, thus the name Channel Island. It pairs beautifully with k1, p1 ribbing or garter stitch.
Step 1. Holding three strands of yarn together, make a slipknot about six inches from the ends and place it on the right needle (this does not count as a stitch). Divide the three strands, using a single strand as the working yarn and the two remaining strands as the tail.
Step 2. Place the single strand around the index finger. Wrap the two strand tail counterclockwise around the thumb so that two wraps are visible below your thumbnail. Make a yarn over on the needle with the single strand (Figure 1).
Step 3. Beginning at the base of the thumb, slide the needle up through both loops on the thumb, then bring it over the single strand, going to the index finger to grab it, then go back down through the two loops on the thumb (Figure 2). Drop the thumb loops and tighten all three yarns. Repeat Steps 2 and 3 for the desired number of stitches; each repeat creates two stitches.
Distribute the stitches over your chosen needles and remove the slipknot from the needles (but don’t undo it) before joining for working in the round, knitting the “beaded” stitches and purling the yarn overs. Undo the slipknot just before weaving in the tails.
Illustrations by Gayle Ford
For more cast-ons and bind-offs, check out our free eBook, How to Cast-On and Bind-Off Knitting!