Q about top down knitting in the round!

Hi there! I am trying to knit a hat. The pattern is a top down knitting in the round. It starts off w/4 cast on stitches, then you knit front and back every stitch to get 8 and then knit f&B every other, etc… So my problem is that I cannot figure out how to join the stitches. Help! TIA.

uh, go look at the knitting in the round video? You sure it’s not a knit flat then seam it kinda pattern? I’m just a n0ob, sorry…

Divide the 4 stitches amongst 4 double-pointed needles. I would CO 4 sts and then slip each one onto a DPN. Join to knit in the round and then continue as per instructions. (If you’ve never knit in the round on DPNs, view the video on this site: http://www.knittinghelp.com/apps/flash/video_player/play/9/1)

I’d do this a little differently. Put the CO sts onto only 2 needles (it’s a lot easier than dividing them onto 4) and using the 3rd needle, knit into the first st and knit a round. Then kfb in every st.
Or you can just cast on, leave them on one needle and kfb across all the sts, don’t turn, but put half the sts on a 2nd needle, then bring the beginning of the row up next to the last st you did on the row, and knit all the sts around. Now you’re joined.

Taking a look at the knitting in the round videos wouldn’t hurt though.

The easy answer is “just do it!” but that won’t help you. Have you ever used a round knitting loom? It really is that simple, and it works just like that, but there are a couple of things that may work:
First of all, if you don’t mind having a tiny seam at the top, you really can cast on four stitches, knit them, then turn the work and PURL front and back–in other words, work flat for a few rows until you have enough stitches that you feel comfortable putting them on dpns or a circular. You can use the tail of the cast-on to sew those few rows to close the hole.
Second, assuming you want to go without seaming anything if possible, you can treat the very top of the hat like glorified I-cord. Cast on the four stitches, knit them, slide them back to the other end of the double-point, knit front and back, slide them…by the time you get to the third increase or so, you’ll have enough to divide. When you’re done, you’ll need to fluff the top of the hat around to get the stitch tension even.

Once you get established, you really do just keep knitting around. On a circular, it’s more obvious. You knit across however many you have on the needle, the first stitch presents itself on your left needle, and you keep going.

Ok, thanks so much, guys! Hey Becky Morgan, I think I like your suggestion best. My question is this: if the pattern is to increase by knitting into front and back of the stitches, should I be increasing those first few rows like that before I join them?
Orrr, if I do the I-cord method you mentioned, can I do this on a circular round? And If I’m sliding them back and forth, then do I turn the needles around too to start working the next row?
Thanks again!

Ok, wanted to clarify one more thing. I have no problem joining stitches to knit in the round when it’s a bigger project. It’s just that I can’t join such a small amount of stitches!

Actually, what I’d do for this is cast on 8 sts, put them on 2 dpns, use a 3rd one to join and knit one round. Then you’d go on to the next increase round from there. After you get more sts on, add another dpn or 2 if you have 5. You’re maybe cutting out 1 or 2 rounds and it won’t make that much difference.

Wow, I’m frustrated, lol! I tried Becky’s 2 ways and couldn’t get it to work. I watched the dpn video. Never used them, but I think I’m going to have to try them b/c it ain’t working for me any other way. I’ll keep y’all posted!

Do you know how to use a single circular and magic loop? If you do, that may be easier than the dpns.

I really like using the method suzeeq mentioned. I’ve used it for knitting socks and also for soda can sleeves, but it would work equally well for a top-down knit hat. Here’s a link to the tutorial where I first learned how to do this:


In the tutorial they use the example of making toe-up socks, but it would work equally well for making top-down hats. Give it a shot! It might be a bit confusing the first few times, but it works great and is easy to do once you get the hang of it.

That’s not the method I was referring to. I’ve tried Judy’s MCO and can’t get it to work for me. I’m simply saying to try using 1 circ and ML, cast on 8 sts, pull the cord through the sts so they’re divided 4 and 4, push 4 of the sts to one end, then loop the other end to join. IMO 4 sts is too few to cast on well, and 8 are much easier to manage.

Thanks again guys. I’m going to watch that last video. I knit in the round all the time but have never done Magic Loop.

Ok, I looked at the MCO tutorial. I think that’s beyond my capabililties! I’m heading off to Joann Fabrics today to see if I can get some dpn’s or the Magic Loop. I’m going to figure out how to do this if it kills me, lol!

Magic Loop isn’t something you buy by that name - it’s a technique for using a longer circular needle to knit a smaller tube in the round. To start the hat and work on it, you won’t need anything longer than 29-36" maximum.

Ahhh, gotcha…Like I said, Judys MCO was very confusing to me at first, but now I prefer to use it and knitting with DPN’s than doing magic loop knitting…I’ve always felt magic loop was a bit too awkward for me…

I thought the magic CO was confusing and since I like the Turkish CO and it’s easy to do, that’s what I use instead. I don’t do dpns, use just one and ML or sometimes 2 circs.

OK, I got the dpns. I’ve got the circular needles. Is there a tutorial you could point me to to show me how to do the Magic Loop?

Have you looked at the magic loop video here on this site? That’s where I’d start. It’s under the advanced techniques tab under circular knitting.

When the pattern reads KFB it’s pretty easy to do your increases that way when doing top-down knitting in the round. You just begin your knit stitch in front, as normal, but without removing the stitch from the left needle, then insert the right needle into the back of the look and knit from the back. I knit combined so I’m more familiar with that form of knitting then most. It’s dead easy to do, just practice a few times on a practice swatch, that’s what they are for! I’m currently on beret number kajillion for my daughter’s friend for the beret I saw on the front of the Winter 2009 Knitsimple magazine. It’s one of the easiest top-down I know, however, I have grown to hate seed stitch. :teehee: