01 May 2013

Everybody Knitting? ~A post from Kelli

hello!  Melissa here ~ just bumping up Will's awesome links in the comments below so that they're right in here with Kelli's hints ~ thanks Will for the extra effort...you rock!

Stephen West's cast on ~ Evelyn Clark's new & improved cast on ~ or just peek at how Will does it his way in his comment (good stuff!)

For some of you who like visual help, I   went to YouTube  and found two helpful videos...

Type the words :  crochet chain cast on   

 That took me to a great video you can click on,   this provisional cast on the pattern calls for.

then ~

Type in the words :  rotate edge shawl 90

 That took me to a video that shows how you pick up stitches and turn to pick up more stitches.

That hopefully can help you to your 7 stitches to start with.

If I can help anyone let me know.

We haven't hooked up Skype... but maybe someday?

Happy May Day KALing 



  1. Thanks for sharing, Kelli! Kudos to you for thinking of these pointers! I have been doing garter tab cast-ons for a while, and forgot that it can be tricky the first time.

    Stephen West utilizes this cast on so much that he provided a tutorial; the only real difference is that he casts on 3 stitches instead of two. Oh, and he just uses a regular cast-on. He included pictures, if that helps.


    I personally don't think it's worth fussing with a provisional cast-on for two measly stitches, so here's my version as I typically work it:

    Cast on 2 stitches using the trusty old longtail method; knit six rows, turn your work. I count out loud; it goes quickly.
    Knit a seventh row, then pause without turning anything. The left edge of your wonky strip is where you're gonna pick up and knit the next three stitches - one in the edge of each purl ridge. Don't over think it; it won't really matter much.
    Next, you continue in the same direction (around to the left) to the 2-stitch cast on edge... pick up and knit your final two stitches there, but again, don't overthink it. I have never, ever looked back at my triangular shawls and worried that the garter tab cast on looked bad. It's just too small and on the edge to matter much.

    I think Evelyn Clark is credited with having pioneered the garter-tab cast on, so I do think it's a great tip of the hat to her genius to be knitting her pattern. Since then, it's kinda become a standard in top-down triangular shawls. Whichever method you choose, the garter tab is great because it essentially provides an invisible cast-on that flows seamlessly into the garter stitch border.

    And if you're still wigged out after trying and failing, take comfort. Lots of people have just cast on seven stitches and moved on with their lives. It's not really gonna be the focal point of your shawl, after all. ;-)

    1. thanks again, Will ~ I bumped your links up into Kelli's post so they're easy to find and actually link now :)

      and told everyone to also look at your comment for your way, Mr Process :)

  2. And of course, after writing all that, I tried Kelli's suggestion and added Evelyn Clark, and came up with this video:


    I am working from the book version of the shawl pattern, and it is worded differently than the technique she describes in the video; I am guessing that she has perfected her garter tab over time, resulting in the version shown in the video. It's pretty awesome!

    1. Thanks for this link. I, too, have the original book version of the pattern.

  3. Willy... I'm one of those who did the simple cast-on. I might be over my head as it is. I switched to the charts when I saw Clark left out directions some like me need. Like when to move a marker. Those suckers are mobile, and if I don't know where it is supposed to be as I do each row, then I can't move it back where it belongs.

    Also, when we start increases on "repeat section" via []'s, it does not say to stop doing * repeats. I'm anal and need to have it spelled out. I have removed markers and making sure my count is correct at the end of each row. I'm thrilled that the pattern is now visible. :)

    You guys are awesome. I really appreciate your input.

    1. see, Penny ~ this is what a kal is all about ~ all sorts of levels of knowledge and people all too willing to share (heh hehheh ... Will-ing to share ~ I slay me!)

      please,please,please don't hesitate to throw up any question at all you might have about this knit as we go along ~ everyone is more than happy to make sure you have success!

      I'm glad to hear you're reading charts ~ there's no going back now :)

    2. It's all on an "if it helps" basis... If I confuse you at any point, forget what I say:

      I only have markers on either side of the center stitch; otherwise, all I have to worry about is the edges; the rest is just keeping 3 knit stitches on either side of the double decrease. The times I've accidentally added a yarn-over, it becomes obvious by the next right-side row... early enough that simply dropping down the increased stitch fixes things.

      And my method for tracking which right side row I'm on: counting the double decreases.

      Good work!!

  4. Thanks, Kelli, for your post and video links. Very helpful for those who have not done this type of cast on.

  5. WillyG way to help the team!

    Thank you