Kitchener Rib Cast On

The Kitchener rib stitch cast on forms an elastic edge that is an excellent start for a 1 x 1 rib stitch or a reversible fabric. I used it to cast on a reversible headband in two colors. This cast on can also be used for a single color cast on, but is actually easier to learn with two different colors. It is called a tubular cast on or Italian cast on and this is just one of many ways of generating a tubular cast on. Read more ..... for stepwise illustrated instructions. Click on a thumbnail to view a larger image.

Related Posts
Kitchener Rib, First Row of Stitching (illustrated instructions)
Kitchener Rib Stitching This closeup of the cast on row, shows the two colors of stocking stitch.

Instructions
This cast on works best with an even number of stitches.
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  1. The yarn position is the same as the long tail cast on and forms a triangle across the thumb and index finger of the left hand.
  2. A temporary slip knot is formed to hold the two colors of yarn together. This slip knot doesn't get knitted.
  3. The temporary slip knot has been tightened and a needle, 2 sizes larger than is used for knitting, is centered between and above the two yarn tails.
  4. KNIT STITCH
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  5. A knit stitch is formed by bringing the needle under the front (light green) yarn,
  6. then passing the needle over the back (darker green) yarn,
  7. bringing the needle back under both yarns and,
  8. completing the stitch by recentering the needle with the yarn tails beneath the needle.
  9. PURL STITCH

  10. Now the purl stitch is formed in a similar manner to the knit stitch, but beginning with the back (darker green) yarn. Begin the purl stitch by bringing the needle towards you under the back yarn.
  11. then pass the needle over the front (light green yarn),
  12. and then under both yarns towards the back.

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The stitch is completed by centering the needle over the "V" of the two yarn tails as illustrated in image 7. The process is continued alternating pairs of knit and purl stitches until the last stitch, which is a half-hitch (backwards loop) stitch to anchor the stitches. Since two colors of yarn were used, the knit stitches are one color and the purl stitches another. Through this process the knit stitches are twisted on the needle, so on the next (1st) round, the knit stitches are knitted through the back loops. The purl stitches are correctly oriented. Details showing how to knit the first row are coming in the next article. If you click on the thumbnail at the beginning of this article, you will see that the knit stitches are slanted upwards towards the right because they are twisted relative to the purl stitches.

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