A step-by-step tutorial on casting on a picot edge the easy way, including a slow-motion video
Picots are a wonderful way to embellish your knitting. They add a little bit of fringey playfulness to an otherwise plain pattern and in this tutorial, I will show you how to knit a picot cast-on.
It’s quite a simple cast-on technique with a stunning effect you do not want to miss. You knit it almost exactly like the corresponding picot bind-off and together they form a lovely pair in case you want to start and end your project with the same edge.
Let’s dive right into it, eh?
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- Start with a slip knot.
- Knit one stitch into that slipknot but keep the loop on the left needle.
- Slip the stitch you created back to the needle twisted (You can also slip it the regular way/point-to-point but it will be less seamless to knit).
- Essentially you are performing a knitted cast-on and you need to cast on two more stitches (altogether three) in that manner.
- Bind off two stitches the regular way.
- Slip the remaining stitch back to the left needle. There should be two stitches now.
- Cast on another 3 stitches with a knitted cast on and continue repeating steps 2-5 until your picot edge reached the desired length.
This method will create a flouncy picot edge. If you want it to curl a little less, you simply have to adjust the number of stitches you cast-on in between. So, in step 4 you could cast on 4 instead of 3 stitches. And then you continue to just bind off two. That way you keep two instead of one stitch in between the picots.
Casting on smaller or larger picots
You can also create larger or smaller picots with this technique. So, here are two examples I created in preparation for this tutorial:
A) 3 stitch picots with 2 stitches in between
- Step 1: Start with a slipknot
- Step 2: Cast on 5 stitches with a knitted cast-on
- Step 3: Bind off 3 stitches
- Step 4: Slip the remaining stitch back to the left needle
- Step 5: Repeat steps 2-4 until you reached the desired length
B) 1 stitch picots with 2 stitches in between
Step 1: Start with a slipknot
Step 2: Cast on 3 stitches with a knitted cast-on
Step 3: Bind off 1 stitch
Step 4: Slip the remaining stitch back to the left needle
Step 5: Repeat steps 2-4 until you reached the desired length
Folded picot edge
Here, at the end of this tutorial, I also want to show you an alternative way to create a picot cast-on edge. It’s a bit more labor-intensive to create but the effects can be stunning – especially as it lays flat!
- Step 1: Cast-on an uneven number of stitches using a provisional cast-on if you are knitting flat (and an even number for projects in the round).
- Step 2: Knit across 5 rows in plain stockinette stitch.
- Step 3: *k2tog, yo*, k1
- Step 4: Knit another 5 rows of stockinette stitch.
- Step 5: Pick up all stitches from the provisional cast-on using a spare needle.
- Step 6: Fold your work at the [k2tog,yo]-line so the wrong sides are facing each other.
- Step 7: Knit the two sides together the way you would knit a three-needle-bind off (without actually binding off). So, you always knit one stitch from the back needle together with one from the front needle. Then knit the last stitch.
I have a video on my youtube channel where I show this method step-by-step in case you are interested.