I am thrilled to welcome and introduce the beautifully talented Rebekka Seale of Camilla Fiber Company as a regular contributor to Bleubird. I have been a long time fan of Rebekka’s work and having her here is such a treat. I have also always wanted to learn how to knit, so this new series is pretty perfect for me and hopefully for many of you. Please show Rebekka a warm welcome. – James
Now, we can get started! To demystify the process a little, knitting is basically transferring stitches from one needle to the other and back again, over and over. For our first project, we’ll be making a cozy scarf. Our first step will be to “cast on” stitches to one of the needles. There are several different cast-on methods, but we are going to use what I call the “thumb cast-on”. Unroll a few feet of yarn from your ball, and make a simple loop about ten inches from the end of the yarn (these ten inches will be our “tail”…we will weave it in at the end). Make this loop into a slip knot by bringing the yarn attached to the ball up through the loop. It will look sort of like a pretzel.
Pick up your needle, slip it through the second loop you just created, and pull on the tail to tighten. This is the slip knot that attaches the yarn to the needle, and it also counts as your first cast-on stitch.
Now we need to cast on 19 more stitches! To do this, hold the needle in your right hand, and drape the yarn attached to the ball over your left thumb as shown. Take the point of your needle up under the yarn on your thumb, then take your thumb out of the loop.
Pull on the yarn to tighten the loop around the needle. Now you have two stitches cast on! Repeat casting on with the thumb loop 18 more times, for a total of 20 cast-on stitches.
This is what it should look like! Kind of a mess, but it’s the beginning of something awesome. Next time we will learn the basic knit stitch, and start working on the body of our scarf!
Photos and Knit 101 by Rebekka Seale for Bleubird.