Well, bravo to those that started the Double knitting! I have seen your progress, and so very proud of you all!
Now, we had some stumbles on the 2 different cast on’s and so I thought I would do a short review….
Double Knitting is a technique to create a 2 sided fabric, usually with the each side being a positive and negative of each other. There is no “right” or “wrong” side and the fabric is thick and squishy. The sides can be open or closed within the knitting process or seemed after, depending on the knitters choice.
The 1st, and easier cast on, is to simply hold both yarns together as ONE and do a normal long tail cast on. On the next row, you will knit the first stitch and purl the second across each SET of stitches. This will set up the 2 sided knitting that is Double knitting. Then continue as per your patten instructions….
The 2nd cast on creates an invisible bottom, or top, edge that is very similar to a toe of a sock. The cast on is performed in a similar fashion to the long tail, with some basic modifications. This video shows the technique best. In written steps it looks something like this:
Holding the 2 yarns in the modified slingshot hold in the left hand, with a slip knot to hold the yarns on the needle in the other hand (Slip knot does NOT count as a pair), swing the needle down under the front yarn, up through the middle and over the back yarn, casting on 1 stitch.
Then swing the needle from the back under both yarns all the way to the front and up over the front yarn and down through the middle casting on the opposite color. You now have 2 stitches, and ONE PAIR.
You repeat this motion to cast on PAIRS of stitches as per your pattern. When you have cast on all your pairs you turn the work and make sure the 2 yarns are locked before proceeding. Then proceed the same as the above directions for the first row…..
IF YOU DID THESE CAST ON STEPS IN REVERSE, or backwards… ie, casting on the back yarn first, your stitches will now be mounted backwards and the NEXT ROW IS DIFFERENT AND CRUCIAL!!!! You will still knit the first stitch and purl the next to set up double knitting, HOWEVER, you will notice the loops are mounted where the leg closer the the tip is the BACK leg. Therefore, to knit this first row, knit and purl through the BACK leg for each stitch. This reorients the stitches, and creates the invisible edge, all at the same time. IT IS NOT WRONG, just different!
Ok, now that we got through all the cast on parts and have knitted the first row… you will want to learn all about the edges and how to deal with them. That will be the next post. For now, slip the first PAIR of stitches on each row and knit and purl away!