How to Knit, Part 1: Casting On

In honor of the New Year, I am introducing a brand new series on my blog. I’m not quite sure how many segments it will be yet, at least a few.

You see, I’ve never learned how to knit, not even the basics. I know there are many more, like myself, who would like to learn but don’t even know where to start. So, I’ve done some research, bought some basic supplies, put in some practice, and I think I’m ready to teach you the very first step in knitting. (If you’re interested–if not, kindly disregard these posts. I’ll be spreading these out amongst other content as well.) The very first basic thing you need to know is something called casting on. Basically, casting on is putting the first row of stitches onto one of your knitting needles. If you’re doing a project that is twenty stitches wide, you would cast on 20 stitches. However, before you cast on, you need to make a knot. Most sources that I’ve checked recommend a slipknot, which I’ll now demonstrate.

Make a loop in your yarn.

From the “tail” end, pull up a loop of yarn through the loop you just made.

Pull taut. The beautyof the slipknot is that by pulling on an end, you can adjust the size of the loop.

Now that we have a slipknot made, let’s try casting on, shall we? This is by far the easiest method that I found out there.

With your right hand, hold knot on needle taut with right index finger (not shown since I’m holding a camera!)

With left hand, make a “V” shape using your left thumb and index finger, as shown.

With right hand, push needle up and to the right, scooping up a loop of yarn created by your finger formation as you go. Let’s see that again:

Make a V with your left thumb and index finger.

Push needle up and through.

Pull yarn semi-taut. You don’t want to make it too loose OR too tight! This could cause problems once you try to knit the second row. Really, it’s all about practicing and getting the hang of it. Once I caught on, I was able to do this pretty quickly.

A small row of these looks like this.

If you want to follow along with this series, here are a few other recommendations:

Buy plain, worsted weight yarn. Nothing fancy to start out with!

Use whatever needles you are comfortable with.  There are many sizes and materials to work with. To start out, I bought a large pair of aluminum ones and a #8 pair of bamboo ones.

Check out YouTube and other sites if you don’t dig my instructions. There’s a ton of differing information out there, I’m just trying to do it the simplest way. Remember that I’m just learning too!

Don’t give up right away if you’re frustrated. I’ve had a couple of those moments and found that if I didn’t overthink it and relaxed, it went much better.

Thanks for tuning in. Part 2 of my series will be teaching you how to do the Knit Stitch.

Happy New Year! Rachel

12 thoughts on “How to Knit, Part 1: Casting On

  1. This is great, I have been wanting to learn for a couple of years. Here everyone learns to do it in school so I was planning to learn with my daughter. Thanks for doing this!

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