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March 29, 2007



Dang! I think I need to buy that book, or put it on my birthday list. I have longed to understand the provisional cast-on (all this cool stuff in Barbara Walker's Knitting from the Top uses it), but I keep getting stymied by it.

I am so lacking in confidence about it that I'm afraid to even read your nice instructions about it. Pathetic, eh? OK, I just read them but I still fear it.


This is so cool! I was just thinking the other day about something I'd like to make using a provisional cast on, and try as I might the crochet way just doesn't make sense to me. Yours sounds totally doable - thanks for sharing!


Wow, I recently fell in love with the provisional cast on, but I had no idea you could do it without a crochet hook involved. I'll totally use this tutorial in the future!


A few months ago, I needed to do a provisional cast-on, and I'd never done one before. I don't crochet, and I don't own any crochet hooks, so I needed to learn how to do a provisional cast-on without one. This video from KnittingHelp.com was a god-send:


Also, I love that you use the word "wonky." It's a fabulous word that doesn't get used nearly enough. :)


No shame in hiring out the knit. When I took a class from Melissa Leapman last year, she confessed that she rarely knits a complete sweater anymore. She sketches, swatches a few crucial parts, and if the powers that be are interested in the design, off it goes to a sample knitter. I was shocked. Now I am shocked at all the work you are doing for the you know. Can't wait till it comes out. Keep on plugging!


I used to use the crochet method for the provisional CO, but wow....so simple and effective.
Thanks for that!
I'm definitely looking forward to see you continue this series.

stell from nz

thank you, for a gal who dont do tutorials, you sure come across as all professional, nice work.
i need that book, now! how can a little post like that make me want soo so bad?


oh my g-d, this is fantastic! i hate hate hate crocheted provsional cast on, but didn't really know what else to do. now, i have another option. thanks!


The first time I did provisional caston was for a baby bolero in One Skein...I was VERY nervous about it...the word "provisional" is daunting. Well, after going online and watching a video clip I was a little less nervous and as soon as I applied myself...piece of cake. I've now added it into projects where they don't have it such as the Poppy sweater in Yarnplay...seamless is great! Can't wait to see you book.


Thank you! I have used the crochet cast on twice for my first two pairs of socks, toe-up. But this looks really easy, I know I can do this, and it will be less messing than the crochet one.

Again - Thanks, great tutorial.


Thanks for a great tutorial! I generally use a crochet chain for a provisional cast on, but since I normally cast on using the long-tail method, this would be much simpler. I will try it next time. Knowing how to do a provisional cast on (any of them) is certainly a handy thing to have in a knitter's arsenal.


Thanks! You should have been a teacher (or maybe you have been since you really have had lots of random jobs.


I always avoid things with provisional cast-ons, because I hate the crochet kind (and I DO know how to crochet, it just is a pain) but this way totally makes sense to me. Thanks!!


I have avoided provisional cast on due to an aversion to crochet hooks, and the fact that I just didn't understand it. Here, in one lesson, you have made me a believer. Thanks for making it so simple.


i have tried this provisional cast once, it is the only one i have ever tried and i can't even remember which project i used it for but i don't remember having that extra loop, at any rate i'm looking forward to trying this again on the sahara pattern which i got last night with my beautiful new yarn! as i rememeber i had some trouble ripping out the waste and finding my live stitches!


and may i say your nails look beautiful!


Very cool. I've been working the crochet provisional cast on (both ways) with many problems for a few months now. I've got a sister sock to make, and will try this way for the toe cast on.



Thank you for that! I was trying to do a provisional cast on the other day for a sweater hem, and, while trying to follow instructions for another type of p-caston did that by mistake, and froged it. After seeing this, I have confidence to try it again!


Great! I've been looking to start using this method. I'm looking forward to your book by the way.


This is definitely my favorite provisional cast-on! I had to learn a while ago to start a sweater with a hemmed edge, and when I saw the tutorials for the crochet method I thought, "well, there's no way I'm doing that!" and I ended up using the knittinghelp.com video that somebody else linked to above... Soon your tutorial will also provide relief for many from the dreaded crochet method!


wow. I never knew it could be that easy. Thanks for the pictures & explaining!


I just recently learned how to do socks toe up using a crochet cast on that you then pick up the stitches to knit. It's so tedious and fiddly! I can't wait to try this one or the one where you actually crochet the cast on the knitting needles. I've seen examples of the different provisional cast on's but sometimes you just have to wait until you have that "a-ha" moment! Thanks Wendy and look forward to more tutorials and a fun follow-along project!

Miss Scarlett

Hey - thanks that is great. You make it sound so very easy. So easy, that I am looking forward to coming across a provisional cast on in the future!
The 1st time I read that I had no clue and cast on as usual - a big wth? when I got to the 'remove waste yarn and pick up live stitches' later in the pattern. In fact that was how I first began utilizing the internet for knitting and discovered blogs.
Thanks again.

Susan Ator

I've looked and looked at the directions for doing a provisional cast-on like this and just couldn't get it. With you saying it's just a long-tail cast-on cleared it up IMMEDIATELY for me. Wow. Also, I never knew about dropping the slip-knot. That would make it *so* much cleaner. Thanks. Thanks so much!


That's awesome! It is sooo easy! Much easier than the other versions of the provisional cast on I've seen!! I'm going to try it when I start my Saharah for the SKB knit along!!!!

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