how to … CROCHET CAST ON …

a pretty and easy way to make a provisional cast on …

This is my favorite provisional cast on. It is very easy and it is very neat looking and that is the reason why it doesn’t need to be only provisional. It could be used as a regular cast on that matches a knit bind off and it is a very neat way to cast on stitches at the end of a row. (I will write about that in another post. Finally here it is).

To make a provisional cast on you will need a knitting needle, some smooth scrap yarn that is not too hairy and doesn’t split and a crochet hook in about the same size as the needle.



slip-knot  hold cr h ifo needle pull loop
With some waste yarn              Hold the knitting needle in      Pull a loop through the 
make a slip-knot on the            your left hand, and the           loop on the crochet hook.
crochet hook.                            crochet hook in your right
…                                                hand, bring the yarn under
…                                                and behind the needle.

1 stitch = 1 stitch cast on (on the needle) + 1 stitch on the crochet hook

cast on 1 pull loop 2

Bring the yarn under and        Bring the crochet hook in
behind the needle.                   front of the needle and pick up
…                                               the yarn. Pull a loop through 
…                                               the loop on the crochet hook.

Repeat these 2 steps until you have cast on the desired number of stitches.

extra ch sts extra ch sts 2
Don’t break the yarn yet.         Break the yarn and tie off.
Make a few more chain           It is on this side you will
stitches with the crochet         start unraveling the provisio-
hook off the knitting needle.   nal cast-on to recapture the
…                                                stitches.

Now you can start knitting. Introduce your working yarn and start the row.



unzip 1  unzip 2
Start at the chain end and        Pull on the tail to unzip 
untie the tail                              the chain.

unzip 3  unzip 4

Gently pull on each chain       and place each recaptured
stitch                                         stitch on the needle.

Repeat these 2 steps for every stitch.

unzip 5  unzip 6
If you were working in the         Place that loop on the needle.
round, the last stitch doesn’t
look like a real stitch , it is
only a loop.

Now you are all done, all stitches are on the needle. Ready to work whatever finishing you had in mind.

. . . stripes with a twist . . .

I like stripes, that must be obvious now, I guess. And I like playing around with stripes …swirl pull 2

Stripes with a twist is a pullover that features a buttoned turtle neck, stripes, extra long sleeves with thumb holes and a playful (easy) stitch pattern that makes the stripes go dancing. (based on the golfjes- a skirt)

swirl pull 6

It is worked top-down, seamlessly in the round with a contiguous sleeve inset developed by Susie Myers.

What you’ll need
MC (main color): ± 600, 700, 800, 900 1000, 1100, 1200m (660, 770, 880, 990, 1100, 1200, 1300 yards) of DK / 8 ply

CC (contrasting color): ± 340, 400, 450, 500, 550, 600, 650m (380, 440, 500, 550, 600, 660, 710 yards) of DK / 8 ply

4 mm (US 6) circular needle
3.5 mm (US 4) circular needle
crochet hook for the provisional cast-on

2 different kinds of markers
– 2 or 3 markers to mark the stitch
– 4 markers to mark the sleevecap

5 buttons (diameter: 1.5 to 2 cm
(0.5 to 0.75”)

20 sts and 30 rows stockinette stitch with the larger needle = 10 x 10 cm (4”x4”)

See more color combinations and examples from my testers here

I also made a matching hat with the same dancing stripes

muts 1 kleiner

muts kleiner

Hat with a twist is a slouchy hat that accompanies the stripes with a twist pullover. It features the same stripes and playful (easy) pattern that makes the stripes go dancing. A large pompom finishes the hat. (Instructions for making a pompom included)
To easily adjust the length of the hat, it is worked top-down, seamlessly in the round.

available for size: KIDS, S, M, L (head circumference: 48-53 / 51-56 / 54-59 / 57-64 cm (19-21 / 20-22 / 22-23.25 / 23.25-25”)

finished measurements: 44 / 47.5 / 50 / 54 cm (17.25 / 18.5 / 19.5 / 21.25”

Check it out here


Most of my patterns are completely seamless, so no need for a tapestry needle, really – except for weaving in and occasional end, of course (I don’t bother weaving in ends that hang at the wrong side and don’t stick out – sshht, don’t tell anyone). But still, it is good to know how to graft two pieces together. Grafting joins two pieces with the stitches still on the needle aka ‘live’ stitches. It doesn’t have the bulkiness of a sewn seam and it looks seamless. It creates a row of knit stitches (see the yellow stitches).

kitchener blog

The kitchener stitch can be used to close the toe of a sock, to close the shoulder seam of a garment worked bottom up or as a tubular bind off that matches a tubular cast on. The pictures in this tutorial show the latter.

You might notice that the ribbing in the photos is a 2/2 rib and the kitchener stitch is usually used on a 1/1 rib. Here is a great way to go from a 2/2 rib to a 1/1 rib. It’s genius.
I didn’t really drop the stitch (too scary) but placed it on a cable needle
and held the cable needle in front.

Lets’ go:


Half the stitches should be on one needle and the other half on another needle. (If you are working a tubular bind off, slip all the knit stitches to one needle (front needle) and all the purl stitches on another needle (back needle).

Cut the yarn at about twice the length of the edge that needs to be grafted. Thread the yarn through a tapestry needle.

first stitch 1  first stitch 2
Insert the tapestry needle        Then insert the needle into
into the first stitch of the          the first stitch on the back 
front needle as if to purl          needle as if to knit (from front 
(from back to front) and          to back) and pull the yarn 
pull it through.                          through

The following steps will be repeated for all stitches.

step 1 step 2-3  step 3-2

Go through the first stitch on     Drop the  stitch off the          Go through the next
the front needle as if to knit       front needle                          stitch as if to purl (back to
(front to back)                                                                        front)

step 4 step 5-6 step 5
Go through the first stitch on    Drop the stitch off the       Go through the next
the back needle as if to purl.       back needle.                      stitch as if to knit.

Repeat these 6 steps until only 1 stitch is left on the front needle and 1 on the back needle. Go through the stitch on the front needle as if to knit, drop it, go through the stitch on the back needle as if to purl, drop it and weave in the end.

Once you have worked a few stitches you will get in the rhythm:
front needle: knitwise, drop, purlwise
back needle: purlwise, drop, knitwise

IMPORTANT (if you are like me 😉
If ‘as if to knit’ or ‘knitwise’ and ‘as if to purl’ or ‘purlwise’ makes your head spin, try to think of it this way.

Insert the needle in the first stitch always inwards, and in the second stitch outwards, no matter if it is the front or the back needle – except for the preparatory step with the very first stitch: see on top.

And the song goes like this:
front: inwards, drop, outwards
back: inwards, drop, outwards

inwards, drop, outwards
inwards, drop, outwards
inwards, drop, outwards
inwards, drop, outwards
in, drop, out
in, drop, out


… golfjes a skirt …

Are you also tempted when you see these gorgeous colors all together in one multicolored skein ? I am.

I love them and I can’t keep myself from buying them. I have a lot of those single, unique skeins … but what to make out of them ?

They are gorgeous in the skein… but I don’t like how they look knitted up and I certainly don’t like the pooling in most cases.

Trying to find something easy that would break up the pooling, I came up with this simple stitch pattern. It is really, really simple even if it looks very complicated. stitch pattrn golfjes

The multicolored skein in the sample above is Wollmeise twin (birkenrinde: black and white with a pink shine). Some random 2 round-stripes (black) and 1-round-stripes (orange) are added to let the stitch pattern swing.

It is ideal to work with multicolored skeins, but would also look great in solid colors.

2014-10-22-1826And I made a skirt with this stitch pattern !!!

skirt 1

Golfjes – a skirt is worked top down, seamlessly in the round. It starts with a provisional cast on to make the best use of your special skein. Because the waistband is added at the end you can adjust its size easily and also decide on the colors later. You can make the skirt as long or short as you want. It is randomly striped so you will need at least 2 colors or as many as you like.

The stitch pattern is charted and written. The written instructions are right next to the charts.

The pattern is written for fingering weight yarn, but a ‘recipe’ is included for other sizes or other yarn weights with a different gauge

What you’ll need
Yardage depends on length of skirt.
As pictured (± 44 cm / 17.25”): total yardage
± 650, 700, 750, 850, 950, 1050m
(700, 770, 820, 930, 1050, 1150 yards) of fingering / 4 ply

3 mm (US 2 1/2) circular needle
2.5 mm (US 1 1/2) circular needle crochet hook for the provisional cast-on
elastic band
tapestry needle
11 markers for the smaller sizes, 12 markers for the larger sizes

29 sts in pattern with the larger needle = 10 cm (4”)

A big thanks to all the testers who made their skirt in something very special. Go check them out for inspiration here.

And the stitch pattern also looks good in a cowl 😉