Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Knitting Made Easier - Turkish Cast On Tutorial

The Turkish Cast-On was recently featured in an article by Meg Swansen in the fall issue of Vogue Knitting.

I found this technique so brilliant I thought I would share it.

The Turkish Cast-On is an invisible cast on that forms a closed end. It is perfect for things like sock toes, mittens, glove fingers, pouches and purses....as I worked it I even thought, "wow this would be a great cast on for the legs and arms of a stuffed teddy bear!"

To work the Turkish Cast-On you need two same sized circular needles. For this demonstration I used two US # 7 (4.5mm) needles - a 24" Addi turbo and a 26" Crystal Palace bamboo so you can differentiate between each needle.

ETA: This technique is easily adapted to the magic loop method, using one circular needle to execute the technique rather than two. However, using two different types of circs as I have for this tutorial does make the technique a bit easier to visualize when first starting out.
STEP 1:

On the bamboo needle make a slip knot.

Hold both needles paralell and in your left hand with the tips pointing to the right and the silver needle on top.
Hold the working yarn behind the silver needle.






STEP 2:
With the working yarn behind the silver needle, working left to right, wrap the yarn loosely around both needles.



Wrap as many time as equal to HALF the total numer of desired stitches. In the sample below, 15 wraps = 30 working stitches.



STEP 3:

With your right hand, pull the bottom (bamboo) needle to the right so that the wrapped loops are now on the cable of the needle. Allow the bamboo needle to dangle.




STEP 4:

Grasp the non-working end of the silver needle and bring it up to knit into the loops on the silver needle.






STEP 5:

After knitting the loops on the silver needle, turn the work.
Slide the bamboo needle loops on to the tip of the bamboo needle.





And slide the silver needle to the right so that the loops are now on the silver needle cable and the silver needle is dangling.



STEP 6:
Slide the slip knot off the tip of the bamboo needle and undo it, just allowing it to hang. With the working yarn coming from the last stitch on the silver needle knit across the loops with the bamboo needle.






Step 7:

Pull the bamboo needle thru to the right so the new stitches are on the cable and the bamboo needle is dangling.
Turn.
Slide the stiches to the tip of the silver needle and knit across with the other end of the silver needle.




Repeat from Step 5 alternating needles with each row. As you alternate between the two needles a firm, seamless two sided "pocket" will form.







The instructions may seem a bit verbose and daunting but if you "Just Do It" it's really very easy...get 2 different circs and some yarn and work step by step and it will all become clear once you put the tutorial into actual practice!
I used the Turkish Cast-On for my toe-up Chervon Lace socks...here's a close up




I found the Turkish Cast-On much easier than all the other toe-up cast on's that I've tried and I prefer not having to worry about any waste yarn.
I also used it to whip up this little pouch for a special friend to store her stitch markers in. Notice the seamless construction of the Turkish Cast-On and the lovely Lucet cord :)





I really like this cast on and I see so many practical uses for it....I hope you give it a try and enjoy it as much as I have!




Happy Knitting!





**FOR MORE DETAILED INFO ON USING THE TURKISH CAST ON FOR SOCK TOES OR MAKING A POUCH, SEE THE OCTOBER 21, 2005 ENTRY IN MY ARCHIVES HERE!**

103 comments:

Solange said...

Thanks again, Debi! I just fall in the sock addiction and was waintig for your tutorial :D

Janine said...

Thanks for the tutorial! I will try it out on my next pair of socks :-)

susoolu said...

I love the turkish cast-on. When I first learnt it, I spent days just casting-on, knitting, ripping, and casting-on again. And with each cast-on I would shout nonsensical happiness.

Great pictures too - very well explained.

Liz said...

holy cow! I think I actually get it. I need to try this with some socks. Of course, that means buying more needles. But it's for the cause right? hehe

Great tutorial.

heather said...

Wow! That is really cool! Thanks for the step by step. That's just the kind of thing I need. A VISUAL.

Ada said...

You did a fabulous job explaining this. I sure am going to try it on my next pair of socks!

Pumpkinmama said...

Very cool technique - I love having new things to add to my bag of tricks. Thanks for taking the time to do write it up.

Sara said...

Very clever! Thanks for the great tutorial. This looks like it could be easily adapted to the magic loop, too.

Anonymous said...

I'm going to have to have special notebook entitled "Debi's Tutorials". You have a way of making everything oh-so-clear. I've been getting the urge to make some socks - just may have to do toe-up ones so I can give this a try! Dorothy (Missouri Star)

New York City Mouse said...

This is great! I can't wait to use it for christmas pouches (to hold gift cards, etc...) out of leftover sock yarn. Thanks!

Rebekah said...

You always have the best tutorials, with the most clear pictures. Thank you so much, and give pumpkin a ear scratch for me.

Agnes said...

Your tutorial was so clearly presented! BTW, I didn't have two circular needles of the same size I needed, so I just used one to do this cast on and it still worked!

La said...

Awesome tutorial!

Now I have a strange request. I need you to send me a picture of P-man that most accurately depicts his coloring. Don't ask, it's a suprise.

margene said...

Looks great but I'm still not convinced;-)

Sharlene said...

Thanks for reminding me about a cool technique! I was thinking of trying some socks again and I want to try this technique as well. I like the little gift bag idea as well. V timely, for the holidays...

Beth said...

Figure 8 sucks, but I'm OK with the provisional method. The Turkish method looks pretty cool. I'll definitely give it a try. Not today - but at least I'll know where to find it.

Anonymous said...

Question: Once you've knit the pouch, where do you go from there? Must you stay with two circs? Are there patterns for socks or purses like this? I love the idea of not having to stitch to finish, but I also am confused as to how you continue a pattern.
Thanks so much for a great tutorial.
Maureen

Patti said...

I tried this a while back, and it was actually easy after a few messy starts, but I never did figure out how to take this flat piece of work and turn it into something in the round, such a toe up socks.. do you just knit your work on to DPNs? how did you close up your little bag? did you just fold it in half and seam it up? Its very cute by the way!!

Patti
pattiofurniture_2000@yahoo.com

Knittykim said...

Is this anything like Turkish Taffy??

snowballinhell said...

Another beautiful, well written tutorial. Very impressive, as always.

lisabai said...

Well done re-stating of this fantastic technique. I'll definitely be pointing others to this site for the expanded explanation.

Di said...

Thankyou thankyou thankyou- I can't readily obtain a copy of Vogue knitting, and have heard how wonderful this cast on is- so thankyou for this little tutorial!

ann said...

this is fantastic! thanks for taking the time to post this.

kimberly said...

Thanks so much for your tutorial. Your pictures are great which makes it so nice to follow. I have that copy of vogue but seeing your tutorial now I want to try this. Thanks again!

Catherine said...

Wonderful tutorial! I'm definitely going to try that.

Barbara said...

so, the difference between this cast on and the figure 8 is just that there isn't a twist between the first two rows?

stacey said...

Wow! Great tutorial! Thank you so much!
Stacey

Jan said...

Thanks so much! I read the instructions elsewhere and just couldn't get my brain to cooperate. Your pictures and explaination are great!

Judy said...

Hello fellow Floridian! I'm from So. FL and now living in Austin,TX for 5 years. I miss the beach! Thanks so much for the tutorial on the Turkish cast-on method. You are also a very talented knitter, I enjoyed looking at your FO photos. Thanks again.

Rebeckah said...

This looks a lot easier than the figure 8 cast on that I have used. I think I'll give it a shot as soon as I finish the socks I am working on right now. thank you for such clear and precise directions.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the step by step directions with very clear photographs. I was going to try following the directions in the magazine but the illustrations always lack something to clarify the written section.
Pat

PutYourFlareOn said...

Great explanation! I just cast on my first toe up using the figure eight method and after reading your tutorial I will be trying Turkish cast on for my next pair. This is possible with Magic loop, right? I'll have to ready back through the comments to see if you've already mentioned it. Again, thanks for posting this great tutorial.

And I found another fun knit blog! Yay!

Carlissa said...

Thank you so much! I have been preparing to do my first pair of 2 on 2 socks and was wondering how I was ever going to make sense of the suggested cast on's I was seeing. This just made so much sense. Maybe it was the pictures, but this is definately bookmarked and will be what I use to teach my kids how to get their socks started.

Jenn said...

Great Tutorial. Thanks!!

Sophie said...

Now I'll really have to rush my second sock since I can't wait to try this on the next pair! Thanks for a great tutorial!!

Sandra said...

Thank you so much for an excellent tutorial. I'm in the middle of 2-socks-1-circ now. Next one I'll try the Turkish cast on.

Jessica said...

Thank you for this wonderfully clear tutorial! I just started a pair of socks on Wednesday, only I used a long circular needle and cast on 2 socks... (I had some practice with another yarn that I decided was not right for the needles)... first I put the slip knot on the needle, wound the 14 wraps that I wanted to start with and then I put another slip knot on & wound the next 14 wraps... THEN I started knitting the socks by increasing 4 stitches on each sock every other round...

I'll do a photo shoot of the process on my blog someday... (weavingrainbow.com/blog)

Cheers,
Jessica

Patti said...

Very helpful tutorial. Can't wait to try the technique.

Anonymous said...

Looked everywhere for the invisible cast on technique requested in a belt pattern. Yours was the best!!!!! Thank you so much. jg

DotMom (a.k.a. Julie) said...

Debi --

I *love* this cast-on! I was trying to use Figure 8 to make some toe-up anklets, and ran across your blog entry here. I gave it a try earlier this afternoon & was successful the first time. What a *great* and easy way to start toe-ups!

Thanks so much for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Sorry but my english is very bad, but you need one circular needles size 80 cm. Addi is perfekt to knit two socks.
Bonnmoran in sweden

To work the Turkish Cast-On you need two same sized circular needles. For this demonstration I used two US # 7 (4.5mm) needles - a 24" Addi turbo and a 26" Crystal Palace bamboo so you can differentiate between each needle.

Maria said...

This is great - thank you Debi!
I'll try your cast on with my next pair of socks - and I have always socks on my needles. Also I'll tell my knitting friends on my German blog - they'll appreciate your tutorial too - thanks again and greetings from Southern Bavaria,
Maria

Lizardknits said...

I don't see any way to get to your archives!

Elizabeth

Suetheknitter said...

I am teaching a class on toe up socks, two at a time on one 40" needle. I am wondering if it's OK to reprint your wonderful tutorial on the Turkish cast on to give out to my students. Email me at letsstartknitting@hotmail.com. Thanks Sue

Crow Calling Woman said...

Would love to see your archives but it seems you have them invisiable to the public. Try changing your settings for your blog.

Kellie said...

Hi Deb,
I have used this cast-on in classes and I wondered how you handle the slip stitch. If you knit into both sides of 15 wraps and the slip stitch, you get 31 stitches. Do you simply fudge and knit them together on the next round or do you really only wrap 14 and a half times to get an even number of stitches?

Jesse said...

Thank you for this tutorial - this cast-on technique has me so excited! I've already made a few dolls with it.

Bev in TN said...

Thank you so much for making this information available! I have heard the term "Turkish cast-on' bandied about, but never before have I found any actual instructions with it. I will definitely be trying this out for the next pair of sock...just finished grafting the toes of the first of my 6th pair the other day and it was the FIRST time I was able to graft satisfactorily (i.e., not all mountains and valleys appearance on the toe). But this technique has me very intrigued. Thanks again for the tutorial.

Anonymous said...

Now that I've tried this technique using your excellent photo tutorial, I'll never go back to doing it any other way. This was easy as freakin' pie. Thank you so much for taking the time to post this!

Diana McDonald said...

Hi, how do I find your tutorial on the turkish cast on?

Diana

yarnhippie said...

Visuals are the absolute best and I will be casting on shortly to test how well I follow your smooth directions; I will let you know how it works out.

Way Cool

The Kitties' Mom said...

How do I find your Archive for October 21, 2005?

Susan said...

Can't wait to try this cast-on. Thanks for tutorial. Love your socks!

Anonymous said...

thanks for such a nice explaniantion and cool pics. i will surely try this on my next project

Micheleknits said...

Thank you for the tutorial. I love it.
Micheleknits

Lisa said...

I just wanted to thank you for this tutorial! I used it to make this clutch purse, and I just LOVE the method now!

Bets said...

Debi, those are the best pics I've seen in a tutorial! Thanks so much :D

twig said...

Thanks for bringing this back up. I missed it the first time around. It looks really interesting.

Opal said...

What an awesome tutorial! I'm thinking of starting some toe-up socks once I get some yarn spun-up and this is just what I needed. Thanks so much.

Tabitha said...

I know you posted this a really long time ago but I wanted to say Thanks for this great tutorial. Clearly explained, great photos, easy to understand. I mastered the technique on the first try.

wildtomato said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you! The Turkish cast on made me love toe up socks even more. I was ready to stab itty bitty knitting needles into my eyes after dealing with the fussy figure 8.

Therese said...

Thank you , So much .. I love this cast on and it's so easy after your step by step explanation and pictures.. thank yo so much

Batty said...

Awesome tutorial!

Lushorama said...

Fan-flippin-tastic tutorial!! So simple, so "why haven't I learnt this earlier?"!!!!
Thanks a billion for feeding my sock-knitting addiction by showing me such an easy toe-up cast-on!
Cheers!!!

vagabond bettie said...

HEY Debi! you're famous! You're mentioned in the latest Stash n Burn! Episode 37! Way cool!

Susie said...

This was so helpful and really made sense once I tried it! Thanks for taking the time to put it together!

junelight-knits said...

You. Are. Awesome. I have been DYING to do a toe-up sock, and read about it, but just couldn't picture it. Thank you SO much for taking the time to do this. I get it now. You rule.

Thata said...

Wow... i really want to try it. Thank you so much for sharing.

hugs,
thata

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
LittleBerry said...

many thanks for that, I've just successfully managed the Turkish cast on after following your instructions... I failed miserably at the previous 3 attempts from 3 other different instructions for this cast on!!!!

PK said...

Great method and tutorial. Thanks much.

Kade said...

Thanks for a great tutorial. I've learned a new technique today!

Roberta Granada said...

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bye

Anonymous said...

Help. Can someone help me I don't understand step4. How do you "knit into the loops???

Yvette said...

Thanks so much for this tutorial! I am now going to try your seamless version of Saartje's Booties - this was so easy to follow - and I have bookmarked it for future reference and to share with friends!

I love using two circs and dpns - hate seams - and make most of my baby things top down - so this cast on is brilliant!

Yvette in Oztralia

Heather said...

I've done this cast-on before but could not get it this time. Something in this tutorial made it click. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

After trying other tutorials, I always come back to this one. It is now listed under GO HERE FIRST in my favorites. It is very easy to understand and works everytime. Thanks for sharing with us.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful tutorial! Just what I was looking for! I have bookmarked this in case I need to use this very easy cast on again. Thank you very much.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for doing this. Your explanation and pictures are very clear! I've got your site bookmarked for every time I do this cast on.

joanna said...

i'm old at socks, new at toe up. love the turkish cast on--just did a toe this way tonight. thank you so much!

Busy Grandma said...

I am an old sock knitter,toe up for a couple of years . I love this seamless cast on better than any I have done yet. You did a great job explaining and visual as well ... sure helps a senior get it much faster. Elsie

Leigh said...

This is great. thank you very much. Trying my first toe-ups with the Bacchus Socks pattern from Interweave Knits Fall 2008. Their explanation is lame.

Kate said...

It really is a "just do it" method - thanks for the great explanation.

David said...

Thank you so much for posting this! I have tried several times to understand how to do this, but could never comprehend the whole process. Your explanation makes it all make sense! Trying this on my next pair. Well done!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your clear, easy to follow directions for the Turkish Cast-On. I only wish all pattern writers could do the same.
KatiesMama1 on Ravelry

Lynnette said...

Great instructions...one question. Where is the slip knot--is it counted as a stitch?

komankova said...

many thanks for this. was pointed here from ravelry when i was asking for the construction of toe-up socks - loved this tutorial. although i am a newer knitter and english is not my ative language, it was clear and produces great results!

Anonymous said...

i've been knitting for ages, but never came accross this method before. it's great! thank you for explaining and sharing.

komankova said...

again - thanks. i have used it for socks and decorative objects and loved it. will be usint it a lot more.

computer screen said...

Debi you are truly admirable. Always put the tutorials are really useful and beautiful creations are generated. many thanks

Tara Spencer

Janet said...

Hi Deb.
This is so much fun. I made the little pouch. I practised first using a heavier yarn. So, seeing the yarn was the same shade of blue as your pouch I just had to make it. I crocheted a little ruffle at the top. What a lovely cast on. I am now doing the Keegle No Hole No Hassle Sock using the Turkish Cast on. It's lovely. Thanks so much for taking the time to teach some great lessons. Dorothy Janet

teething symptoms said...

follow the step was great, I loved the result, mine were very nice, thanks for sharing all this with us

Flower Delivery said...

This is really fantastic and remarkable one

Beth2 said...

Thank you so much for the detailed instructions and pictures. I haven't knit toe-up socks yet (love top down), but probably will a some point. Will definitely give this a try!

Jenny said...

Thanks so much for this - I had been struggling to understand the Turkish cast-on instructions given in a book for about an hour and a half before it occurred to me to google it, and with your instructions I managed the cast-on within about two seconds!

Lisa said...

This is great. Once I got started, I realized it's like the Magic Loop method but with two circulars. I've also learned that if I have two short circular needles, I can do the Turkish cast on and keep on going with the two needles. Thanks so much!

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flowers montreal said...

This is very nice explanations. Very Good!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the tutorial. It was very clear and it really helped to have both the words and the pictures. Now I just have to "do it"!

Vicky said...

Thank you so much for this clear tutorial - I can't wait to try it out!

deejay said...

Deb. I have more luck with this tutorial. I have used it since you first posted it along with Judy's Magic Cast On. I know it's something I am doing wrong with the working yarn and the non-working yarn. I must twist it the wrong way on one end but I always get an ear. No worries with the Turkish Cast On. I too print out your tutorials and keep them in a binder so I can have it at hand, especially when I have my 79 year old memory blanks. After years of knitting from the top down socks there is nothing like the toe-up socks. Thanks for getting me started.

deejay said...

Deb. I hope I haven't posted this a second time. My 79 year old eyes have trouble with the funny words.
This is a belated thank you. I have used your tutorial for years now. I also made the little pouch, what a great practise piece.
I too, print out your tutorials and
keep them in a binder. You got me started on the toe-up socks after learning the Turkish Cast On. Your tutorials are so easy to understand. Again, thank you.

Anonymous said...

Saved my sock monkey hat muzzle for my grandson. Thank you! Great tutorial that I will use again.