Lace Cast On

At the end of the day, I frequently will relax against a bunch of newly-fluffed pillows and browse through a book or journal related to some sort of fiber art.  Last night I browsed through Vibeke Lind’s excellent Knitting in the Nordic Tradition.  I’ve had it for years and love reading it every time.

In the “Caps” chapter, my eyes were drawn to a cap with lace casting on.  (I thought it would look cute on my granddaughter.)  Many (many) years ago, my grandmother knit me a lace cotton sweater/shirt, and I remembered that the cast on edge was unusual and sort of lacy.  So of course I had to experiment – never mind it was midnight!

I got out of bed, grabbed the first ball of fiber (worsted weight cotton) I came across (there are bowls of ’em everywhere so that wasn’t hard).  I found some needles in a cup near that yarn but, alas, they were way too thin to work with the cotton (left over from a weaving project).  So I walked two more feet and voila –  circulars (probably a size 4 US)!

Clutching the yarn and needles, I climbed back into bed and started to experiment.   After casting on, I picked up and knit a few rows of a simple garter lace pattern.  Here’s what it looks like; notice the cast on edge!

Method:  Cast on two knit stitches on the left needle.  Holding the yarn forward, slip the first stitch onto right needle.  Now knit the stitch remaining on the left needle and then slip the first stitch (the one you slipped onto the right needle) over the stitch you just knit.  Turn the knitting over and repeat until the two-stitch lace cast on band is as long as you want it.  Lastly, knit the two stitches together, and then pick up stitches through the loops you’ve made on the band.

Lind says using this kind of band for hats allows the knitter “to measure the head as you knit the band” (p. 88).  In addition, she writes that it “makes decorative borders suitable for delicate knitting” (p. 32).

So I’m thinking … the Cashsilk project (still in the early stages of experimentation and design) just might get a lace cast on edging.


About sweatyknitter

Fiber art devotee, author, and amateur artisan bread baker.
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4 Responses to Lace Cast On

  1. Cheryl Marie says:

    Very nice – I’ll look forward to seeing your experimentation with this!


  2. Curls & Q says:

    It is similar to the long tail c/o but there is an extra “twist” – makes the edge “springier.” It’s my main cast on method.


  3. I’m not sure I know what an “Old Norwegian cast on” is … I learned when I was little in Norway from my grandmother. Would that be it? 🙂


  4. Curls & Q says:

    How the heck do Barb and I not have this book? Thought we had all of the Nordic ones. Thanks! Can’t wait to get book and try this. Have you tried Old Norwegian cast on?


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