Monday, November 24, 2014

Knitting in the round: how to hide your cast on

Have you ever noticed that the best thing about knitting in the round is the cause of the worst thing?  You don't have to sew up a seam, but because each new round starts a layer higher than the stitch that came before it, the start of the round always shows.  Bleah.

When I design hats or cowls, I look for ways to hide that jog, and when I'm running in the cast on and cast off tails I try to weave them in to hide the gap at the edges of the piece.  Before I share my pattern for the hatcowl later this week, I thought I'd show you today how I do that in case it's a tip you can use.  And if you've got another approach, I'd be glad to hear it!

Essentially, I embroider a fake stitch into the cast-on border with the tail, before running in the end.  You can click on this photograph if you need a closer look at where I place the darning needle, but what you're looking for is the midpoint of the bottom of the first stitch to the left of the tail.

When you slip the needle through and pull the yarn snugly, and certainly after you run the end through the back of the work, you can't tell there was ever anything different about that patch of stitching.

The cast off gap is often a good deal worse, as seen here:

But it's an easy fix.  Again, use your cast off tail to embroider a fake stitch that runs to the midpoint of the next stitch, but this time, you're choosing the one to the right of the tail.

Pretty, yes?

Here you can see there is a little hole from how far apart the stitches were stretched, but that's easily hidden by the tail when you run it through the back.  Frankly I'm still impressed, even after all this time, at how much better an end looks after you do this little trick!

In other news, I hope you all had a wonderful weekend?

I spent part of mine admiring the huge new condo (which, as I may have mentioned, is larger than our entire house) and the other part realizing that every single room in it needs repainting and not just the two or three I thought were too tired to go on.

After which I made my choice between hiring painters or having a bathtub in the master bath (because the previous owners removed the one that was there, tiled over it, and put a storage cart in the space.)

And then spent what was left of the time off trying to convince myself that I really can pull off painting all that cavernous space, plus Christmas knits, plus my usual workload, plus the start of the design stage for the renovation, all before December 20th or so.

I didn't quite swing it, but I've decided to go in optimistic and think of contingency plans while I go on as best I can.   Pretty good philosophy for most situations, don't you think?

Hope you don't have to lean on it today though - have a fun day instead, and I'll see you back here again tomorrow!



Linda said...

there is a way to hide it you add one stich to your cast on and slip the first stitch to the right hand needle and then knit your first stitch and pass the first stitch over to the left hand needle so that you won't see the join. hope I described that correctly. there are several vidios on it.

Mary Keenan said...

Oh, thanks Linda, I'd forgotten that one! It works really well :^)

Jenna Wingate said...

This frustrated me to no end when I first started knitting in the round! I have come up with ways to hide it, but not as neat as your method! Thanks so much!

Mary Keenan said...

Glad this helped, Jenna!