How I Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular (Cuff Down)

During my first pair of socks, I decided that it would be best to knit two socks at the same time. While there are many resources on the web and in books on how to cast on using a long circular needle, I always got confused over where I was and devised this method. It might take a few more steps, but it’s easier for me to keep track of. And I apologize in advance for the poor picture quality. Directions are for right-handed peoples… Needles and accesories:

  • 1 Addi Turbo 40″ circular in the appropriate size (insert Brenda Dayne’s Addi Turbo sound effect here)
  • 2 double points in the same size
  • a stitch marker

I use the Twisted German Cast On, which I can never remember, so have to look it up every time. I usually look at the hand-drawn pictures in Simple Socks: Plain and Fancy by Priscilla Gibson-Roberts for a reminder. Here is a site with great pictures for the Twisted German Cast On: Knotty Girls (PDF).

1. Using your 2 double points held together, cast on half the stitches, count the stitches, place marker, then cast on the other half, and count these also (can you tell I’m a bit anal retentive?). Here’s how it looks when you’re done with this step:

Here’s information we will use later: There is a “slashy” side:

and a “bumpy” side:

2. Now pull one needle out until you reach the marker, then push it back so it’s sticking out. Make sure all the stitches stay on the other double point. You’ll end up with this:

3. Pull the other needle out in the opposite direction. You can put away the stitch marker but don’t lose it till you’re done with the second sock. The result: (As you can see, it naturally folds in half. This picture shows all the slashes on the inside, and all the bumps on the outside.)

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 5

4. Slip stitches to the circular as if to purl. I always start with the half without the long tail:

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 6

Count as you go, just to be sure…

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 7

You’ll end up with half the stitches on the double point, and half on the circular:

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 8

5. Using the other end of the circular, slip the other half of the stitches. You’ll end up with this (the circulars just want to flop around):

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 9

6. Now for the fiddly part. There are several ways to connect the circle but I think this looks best. Turn the circular so the tips are pointed to the right. Make sure your stitches are folded in half with with the bumpy side on the inside. (You should have your long tail on the back needle.) Using one of your double points, slip the first stitch on the back needle to the front needle:

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 11

7. That was easy! Now think of this next in 2 parts: a) On the front needle, and still using one of those pesky double points, slip what used to be the last stitch over the stitch you just put there, and keep it on the double point:

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 12

b) Bring that stitch to the back needle and let go. All finished:

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 13

8. Repeat all for the second sock. When it comes time to slip it on to the circular, there are a few considerations.

  • Because the 40″ needle is generous, you can move the first sock down the cable so it doesn’t get in your way. Just be sure the two halves don’t get connected.
  • It’s kind of hard to tell which end of your cast-on is on which needle. (Which is good, you don’t want it to be obvious when you’re finished.) So:
  • Pull the tail. One stitch will move. This is the end of the circular that you’ll use for Step 4 above.

And then you’re ready to knit knit knit

Cast On 2 Socks on 1 Circular 14

If you have any questions, please leave a comment. If my photos are not clear, I can try it again on my next pair of socks when my husband’s home to help!

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