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The 1 knitting cast on you can’t live without

 

Casting on is one of the most crucial skills a knitter will learn, and the backwards loop cast on is one of the most versatile cast ons there is. It can be used as a very basic, beginner’s cast on or as a technique to cast off stitches in the middle of a row. This is a very easy technique to learn and you’ll never be able to go back.

 

Backwards loop cast on using With Love in the color Cerulean
Backwards loop cast on using With Love in the color Cerulean

 

Wrap the yarn counter clockwise around your thumb and slide the needle from the bottom up, transferring the yarn loop from your thumb to your needle. That is it! The whole cast on is a repeat of this technique.

 

You need to make sure the strand of yarn closest to you (that has come around the back of your thumb) is underneath the other strand, so they cross.
You need to make sure the strand of yarn closest to you (that has come around the back of your thumb) is underneath the other strand, so they cross.

 

If you don’t like wrapping it around your thumb you can make a loop with the yarn and twist it backwards. To find out if you have done this technique correctly just let the loop go after you put it on the needle. If the yarn untwists and falls off, then you twisted it the wrong way.

 

If it's really not working for you, try wrapping the yarn the other way around your thumb, it might fit the mechanics of your personal cast on better.
If it’s really not working for you, try wrapping the yarn the other way around your thumb, it might fit the mechanics of your personal cast on better.

 

Another way to use the backward loop cast on is when making button holes. Bind off the amount of stitches to cover your button, and on the return ‘trip’, use the backward loop technique to cast on the same amount of stitches you bound off in the previous row.

 

Put the needle underneath and bring it up through that little space between the yarn and your thumb.
Put the needle underneath and bring it up through that little space between the yarn and your thumb.

 

This is going to be an important technique in our pattern tomorrow so give it a try. I think this is one of the most utilitarian, save-the-day techniques that I have ever used. Just don’t confuse it with an increase. You want to use a ktbl or kfb if you’re trying to make a stitch. This is a cast on method and will leave a horizontal boarder under the stitches you have cast on. Join me tomorrow for more knitting fun.

 

This is part 2 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 1:  Red Heart’s Strata yarn is perfect for summer knitting

Go to part 3: Cordial yarn is ideal for a knitted market backpack

About Michelle Nguyen

Michelle Nguyen is founder and creative director of Stitch Please Yarns. She originally got into the fiber arts business writing about knitting at her blog Stitches be Slippin, and now, also writes for KNITmuch.com.

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