So many knitting patterns these days rely on what are called provisional cast ons—that is, cast ons that allow for your cast on stitches to be removed and reworked for a seamless effect. The beauty of this technique is that it allows you to more easily create classic finishing details, like a folded or picot hem, or to pick up stitches to work in the opposite direction.
Carol Feller's Leitmotif Cardigan (Interweave Knits, Fall 2010) uses one such cast on to inform the structure of a classic cardigan. Rather than work two front pieces and one back piece in the traditional cardigan architecture, the Leitmotif Cardigan begins with the invisible provisional cast on (see this glossary entry on Knitting Daily to brush up on your invisible provisional cast on skills). You work first the right side of the cardigan, beginning with the lace panel then transitioning to the stockinette body and finishing with a simple cable pattern. When the right side is finished, the provisional cast on is removed and those live stitches are placed back on the needles to work the left side of the body as a mirror image to the right.
Watch Eunny Jang demonstrate the Invisible Provisional Cast On, as well as other provisional cast ons, in this video from Knitting Daily TV.
If you plan on knitting the Leitmotif Cardigan, be sure to post photos of your finished project in our Reader's Gallery, and let us know what you think of the invisible provisional cast on!
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