First project...easy, but?

This pattern is a scarf, knitted lengthwise. Do I need to start with a tail as long as half of the ball of yarn? THANKS for your help.

You’re referring to how much yarn to estimate for a long tail cast on? I think this is the perfect place to use two ends of yarn for the long tail cast on (pulled from the same ball of yarn or two separate yarn balls). When you’ve cast on all the sts, drop the second strand of yarn. I gives you one extra tail to weave in, but it’s worth it.

Thank you for your response. I’m new at this, so I don’t follow what you mean by usng two ends…

Usually with long tail cast on you estimate how much yarn you’ll need for the cast on and tie a slip knot that goes over the needle. Then you cast on with the two strands of yarn. In order to use two separate strands of yarn, tie a knot near the ends and put that over the needle. Use the two long strands for the cast on. You can see a video here. Alternatively, you could use a knit or cable cast on for your scarf (also included in the Cast on videos). I like knitting a xcarf this way. It seems to go faster.

It won’t be anywhere near half the ball of yarn. If you want to do a long-tail cast-on, one good way to guesstimate is to wrap the yarn around both needles (held together) as many times as you’ll cast on. If you need ten stitches, wrap the yarn around ten times, then make your slipknot, take the wrapped yarn off the needles, put the slipknot on one needle and cast on. That usually leaves you a bit of a tail, but it’s better than under-guessing.

You can also do a knitted cast-on if you like those.