Making my first hat

Hello everyone.

I've only just started knitting and my only completed project thus-far is a scarf which I did in simple stocking-stitch.

Today I decided I'd like to start something a little more involved and went to the knitting shop where the nice lady gave me a free pattern she'd made for a hat with a ribbed edge.

I'm a little thrown on something which is, I'm sure, very basic.

To do a ribbed edge I need to do two knits, two purls, two knits, two purls etc. This, as I understand it, is to made the edge a little more elastic and therefore the hat will be more snug.

Therefore my question is this: Should my casting on also be switching between knits and purls, or is this even possible?

I've made a bit of a mess of it so far...


MMario's picture

It is possible to switch between knit and purled cast on - in *some* methods ; but for most methods it doesn't matter and will not make enough difference to bother with.

MMario - I'm not divorced from reality - we're having a trial separation

smalltownknitguy's picture

Knitting Daily has a free ebook of techniques that shows how to do a long tail cast on alternating from knit to purl. It is not difficult to do, just awkward for a beginner (or experienced who has never tried).

I've worked a lot of projects with knit-purl ribbing of various counts, and I've never done anything but a simple cast on. It seems a bit tedious to worry about a knit-purl cast on, but it might be interesting to try sometime. Since the edge will need to be quite elastic, don't cast on too tightly. When I cast on, I hold both needles together and cast on over both of them. When the proper number of stitches are on, pull one needle out, and then begin picking up the stitches. That technique was taught in my Icelandic knitting course.

Pinecone's picture

I agree with the others; I don't vary the cast on for ribbing. I use the common "long tail" cast on because it is plenty elastic. Good luck with the hat!

Ah, splendid.

Thanks guys.

I've just finished casting on normally, though I must have a go at the other methods. It's all a bit trial & error at the moment.

michaelpthompson's picture

I agree, I usually use a standard long tail cast on. The edge is reasonably elastic and makes a nice edge on the ribbing. There is a cast on method called "knitting on" that could be done with knit and purl, but I'm not sure the extra work is worth it for the final product. Personally, I like the nice even edge of the long tail cast on in this instance, rather than having a ribbed edge.

"All knitting is just one stitch at a time."

"All knitting is just one stitch at a time."

michaelmiddle's picture

Good luck with your first hat! I just finished my first hat last week, and while it drove me crazy at the time, it was completely worth it, and I'm now addicted and working on my second hat (with a chart no less).

I used long-tail CO and it was perfect!