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September 22, 2011 / KristenMakes

Cast Away!

Hello, and welcome back to the next installment of our Newbie & the Knitter KAL!  Now that Sarah is all healed and back to knitting and I am returned and recovered from London Fashion Week (full wrap-up post on that later!) so now we are back on track with our knitting!

How did your swatching go?!  Did you try both swatches, or just the stockinette to check gauge?  We did have a few questions and trials on the flickr group but it looks as if things are getting sorted!  If you are all swatched and ready, then let’s cast-on!

Now the pattern mentions that for the smallest size, you may need to use double pointed needles (DPNs) for the first few rows, as the neckline might be too small for the stitches to stretch across the length of the needle.  For help with DPNs, check this tutorial.  Also, if this is your first time knitting in the round with circular needles, check out this tutorial.  Of course watching a video may not make sense until you have the knitting directly in front of you so if you are still stumped, hold off until you have cast on and then give it a go.

Ok, Cast-ons.  I could do a super-long boring post on the many kinds of cast-ons, but instead I’ll just share with you my favourite cast-on (long-tail cast-on), share a link with other types for you to check out (here) and proceed.

So why is my favourite cast-on the Long-Tail Cast-On?  To me it is easier, more consistent and sturdier than most cast-ons.  It also makes a really nice edging. has a great video (well, many great videos) on this cast-on, and that is probably how I learned all those years ago.  To be fair, it is a bit more difficult at first, but after a few tries your fingers learn the rhythm and the movements and act without being told.  If you haven’t tried it, I recommend getting some scrap yarn and giving it a go.

Now Cadence doesn’t specify which cast-on to use (some patterns might), so really go with your favourite method.   Once that has been chosen, grab your yarn and your needle and take a nice long breath.  Relax, this will be fun if you let your mind go!

First you need to locate your size, which we actually did back in the yarn post.

Chest: 31[35, 38.5, 42.5, 47, 51, 54.5] inches

Recall your size, take a pen, and underline where your size falls to in the next few steps.  The size I will be knitting is the 35” bust, so in every series of numbers to follow, I will follow the second in the series.  I’ve underlined it so that my eyes fall automatically to where I need to be:

Finding my numbers

So now I know that I need to Cast-on 84 stitches.  Count the number of stitches a few times to be sure, if you are under just add a few more on; over, slide a few off.  In the picture you see I’ve balled up the tail into a nice bundle.  Too many times have I grabbed the tail and accidentally knitted with it, so I like to ball it up now instead.  Your choice of course!

circular knitting!

Now if you are new to circular knitting, pull up the video again for a refresher.  Add a stitch marker to mark the end/beginning of the round.  Spread the stitches so that they span the length of the needle and arrange the work so that the stitches are straight and not twisted around the needle and right-hand needle is the one with the working yarn and tail hanging from it, grab the working yarn from the right-hand needle, and use it the knit the first stitch from the left-hand needle.

circular knitting!

Alright, on to the Set-up round from the pattern.  Make sure to follow your size, and take your time.  If you lose your place you can look at and analyse the stitches to see where in the pattern you are.  Once your eyes learn to recognise the K’s and the P’s its simple:

Continue on with the Set-up round, placing more markers as you go.  I used an orange marker to differentiate the start-of-round marker from the other green markers.  The green markers show where the arms and body are:

Follow to the Next Round in the pattern.  As the pattern states, repeat this round 5 more times for a total of SIX.  Aaaaand, you have a neckline!

Your Neckline!

Well done, you!  Now take a break, have some tea and chocolate… you deserve it!  Next up we will be proceeding to the chart/increases.  So exciting!  Feel free to share your questions/photos on our flickr group, it has been a great way to share and discuss!



Leave a Comment
  1. Elizabeth @ Coppertop Kitchen / Sep 25 2011 8:13 pm

    I just finished! Not only did I finish, but what I have looks just like what you have! I feel quite accomplished. Tea and chocolate for me! 🙂

  2. Sabine / Oct 8 2011 11:46 am

    I also just finished my neckline. It looks very nice. I`m looking forward for the next post; I tried to continue but I got stuck very soon… But now tea and chocolate for me too! Have a nice week-end,
    Kind regards from Switzerland Sabine

  3. KristenMakes / Oct 8 2011 11:51 am

    @Sabine, I’m so glad you are happy with your neckline! We’ll get the next post up soon, no worries! In the meantime I am glad you are enjoying your tea and chocolate! xx

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