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abby.elizabeth
05-21-2008, 08:03 AM
I am trying to knit a lace shawl, but I can't get started! The yarn is so thin, I don't understand the circular cast-on, and once I manage to get the stitches cast-on, I can't figure out how to distribute them to the different dpns without dropping a stitch or getting them twisted. i know I'm not the only one with this frustration, so can anyone out there help me?

mathwizard
05-21-2008, 09:03 AM
Have you thought of using circular needles instead of dp? At my LYS meetings on Thursday, a lady just finished a lacey shawl and she did it on circular needles. Does the pattern require a particular kind of cast on? I tend to use long-tail and my circulars needles. Slow and take your time is the only advice I can give you.

of troy
05-21-2008, 09:22 AM
--are you starting with 4 (or 6, or 8) stitches?
try this:

take some waste yarn(about the same weight)-sock yarn say,or cotton (embroidery floss will do--cheap and easy to waste!)

using 2 DPN's, ANY cast on, and cast on 4 stitches, and make 2 or more inches of i-cord.

then, pick up real yarn, leave a 6 to 8 inch tail, and start your knitting. if you need 8 stitches to start, *K1, YO.--on to each DPN)
If you need an other number, do what works, increasing as needed till you have the correct count (4, or 6 or 8!) stitches on your dpn's.

the icord stem will help hold the needles (they will still be floppy, but less so!)

to finish:
thread tail onto tapestry needle and thread it through all the stitches, (being especially sure you pass through the YO's.(up 1 "thread", down 1 'thread" with tapestry needle (do not pull tight.(do this once)

then Cut off the cast on of i cord. and unravel to "real yarn"
double check you've caught ever stitch, (and pass through each stitch again with tapestry needle. Then snug up tail yarn (into a nice, neat, tight eyelet). weave in tail.

You can also use a Magic Loop or 2 circ's once its time to start the real knitting... the i cord stem still is a help (but it can be shorter..1 inch or so )

suzeeq
05-21-2008, 09:30 AM
Of Troy's I cord method is really good. What I do when starting with just a few stitches is to CO, then put them only on 2 needles, use a 3rd to knit with. This is much more manageable and as you increase and knit a few inches, add a 4th needle (and 5th if you use a set with 5) and rearrange the stitches. You can also do this with 2 circs; co, fold the circ in half so the sts are on both points and knit with the 2nd one.

abby.elizabeth
05-21-2008, 09:35 AM
that sounds like a good idea! i will have to try this method - hopefully it will help!

LadyB
05-21-2008, 10:46 AM
Here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0gK7yn-M7Yg) is a video of how to do the circular cast-on.