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Kanaye 05-04-2012 10:24 PM

Cable Cast On Issue

I have a pattern and it wants me to cable cast on 314 stitches. It was very difficult for me to cast on the 25 stitches I needed for the gauge swatch. I knit very tight and I kept having to take them off and recast them cause it was too tight to slide down my 13 needle.

What is the point of cable cast on? Do I have to use it? Can I use long tailed cast on instead?

It's a lace pattern from French Girl Knits.

suzeeq 05-04-2012 11:12 PM

Try the knit cast on instead of cable. It's strechier, as long as you don't pull the yarn tight, you might need to use a larger needle too. The LT cast might not be as stretchy and it's hard to figure out how much to use for a tail unless you use 2 ends to CO with.

Jan in CA 05-04-2012 11:39 PM

I would say to try using a larger needle to cast on, then knit with the correct size. You need to practice not pulling the yarn so tightly though, too.

Kanaye 05-06-2012 01:29 AM

I think using a bigger needle will make the cast on harder to do.

I will try the knitted cast on. If that doesn't suit my needs then I'll just have to work very very hard on the cable cast on.

Thank you both for your input.

salmonmac 05-06-2012 05:35 AM

The idea of the larger needle is to make the cast on looser. If you're working on circular needles, try casting onto a size larger needle and then slipping the sts onto the smaller needle. That should give you more room in each stitch for your next row.

suzeeq 05-06-2012 09:18 AM

Just going up one size won't make the CO any harder to do, but would make the loops a little bigger and easier to knit into.

DogCatMom 05-07-2012 01:52 AM

The idea of the cable cast-on vs. the long-tail cast-on for lace is that there's more stretch in the CCO, esp. if it's been performed with some looseness (?), when it comes time to block the lace. The extra yarn in each stitch is invaluable during the blocking; that extra yarn isn't part of the knitted-on cast-on or the long-tail cast-on. (I'm assuming that the lace piece is being cast on at the outer edge and that you're working back to the neck edge or similar.)

I have trouble with the CCO, too, and use a crochet hook to help me get through it. Otherwise, I'd probably still be casting on the 88 CCO stitches that I had to do for a class *last* May!


Kanaye 05-07-2012 02:53 PM

Oh, I never thought of using a crochet hook!

The difficulty I was having wasn't the knitting into the stitches, it was getting the stitches from the tip of the needle to the shaft of it.

They would be very tight and I couldn't move the stitches down the shaft.

I will definatly try using a crochet hook. I won't have to work at the very tips of the needle, so the stitches won't have to go back and forth.

I'll let you know how it works out.

GrumpyGramma 05-07-2012 03:46 PM

Cable cast on was a challenge for me to get the hang of, I've not really used it so it might be when I do it again. One thing I found helpful was to work on the knitted cast on. Keeping the needle in the stitch instead of removing and reinserting it helped me get the tension right (or at least closer to right). Once I could see what the stitch was like on the needle it helped me to be able to adjust the way I worked the stitches to get them loose enough; with that in mind it helped me to not tighten the cable cast on too much. I couldn't make it work until I knew what I was trying to accomplish. I mention this because you might find something in it helpful or it might help you figure out a way that works for you. Good luck with your cast on. I'm confident that you will get it.

suzeeq 05-07-2012 04:17 PM


The difficulty I was having wasn't the knitting into the stitches, it was getting the stitches from the tip of the needle to the shaft of it.
Don't form the sts on the tip of the needle. Stick the needle past the taper into the space between the sts, wrap the yarn around it loosely, and pull the new stitch through. Then without pulling the yarn any more, make sure the new stitch is up past the tip and onto the shaft of the needle. The key thing here is to not really tension the yarn at all, that's what keeps enough space between them and not make them tight.

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