Creative Knitting Newsletter

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Readers Speak

Curling Cast-On

Meme writes, "I was reading the write-up about casting on for ribbing (which was great by the way). I want to know why the bottom of my rib (I cast on like you instructed) looks more holey than the other rows above it. Is my tension wrong? I am probably a tight knitter, but I do relax into it after a few rows. Also, my rib curls in on the sides. Could you advise me what I am doing wrong? I am mainly a crochet person, but I do the odd bit of knitting and would love to do more."

Editor's Comments

Thank you, Meme, for trying something new! The knit/purl variation of the long-tail cast-on is great for ribbing. If you are new to the long-tail cast-on, I can imagine that your stitches may be a little loose because the hand motions are a bit convoluted. The best thing is practice, practice, practice until the motions are comfortable and the tension is even.

Regarding the curling edges, this is not uncommon when working a rib. If this rib is at the bottom of a sweater, don't worry -- the curl will disappear when you sew the side seam.

Which brings up another point: If you are working a knit 1/purl 1 rib that will be seamed with mattress stitch at the sides, begin the right-side rows with knit 2 and end the right-side rows with knit 1. This way you have one extra stockinette stitch on each side that will disappear into the seam, and the side seam will have a purl on one side and a knit on the other for a perfectly uninterrupted ribbing.

-- Judith

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