Casting On

Hi All,

I am a brand new knitter and also new to this site (love it by the way!)

I have a question regarding casting on. I learned this method way back when and now that I am trying my hand at knitting again many years later, I do not see or hear of anyone using this technique.

To cast on, I was told to just twist the yarn around my thumb and slip the needle under and you have cast one on. Very, very simple. My confusion is that if this is an accepted way of casting on and is correct, why don’t more people use this method. I see a lot of long tail casting on but find this a bit more difficult to do. Please advise. Thanks a bunch!


It’s a perfectly legitimate cast on. There are many ways to cast on. You’ll discover some advantages and disadvantages to each way. Your method (sometimes called backwards loop cast on) is easy to do, but can be tough to knit off of (the little loops are tight and hard to get your needle into). Also, it can look a little sloppier than other methods of casting on.

The long-tail cast-on, once you learn to do it, is almost as fast, and it sets you up for a much easier time when knitting your first row.

Amy has videos for several different cast-ons (casts-on?) at this page: Note that your method, called single cast-on, is there.

Give all of them a try – it’s worth knowing more than one way!

Hello again,

Thank you so much for your prompt reply. I appreciate it and will take the time to master the long tail cast on too based on your advice. :wink:

One more question then since I am a newbie. Should I learn the English or the Continental method to begin with. I would like to learn one really well and start off on the right foot along with what is easiest for a beginner. Thank you again. I am so excited to get started but am nervous about starting off wrong.

I am a new knitter too and my co-worker showed that to me as a short cut to the casting on via the knitting method. I like the thumb method for casting on, it’s quite quick.

Thank you bethie! :thumbsup:

Hello, and welcome. You’ve found a good site. Do take the time to look at Amy’s video’s they are awsome! I am returning to knitting after a 20 year lapse, and I forgot how to cast on! I looked in a number of books and could not find anything that looked familiar – then I went to bed and dreamed about how I used to cast on! Still haven’t found my method anywhere, but recetnly someone taught me the “long tail” method, and now that’s all I use. It does make a pretty edge. Good luck! :wink: