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by Mary the Hobbit, Jan. 19, 2009

Figure-8 Cast-on

The "figure eight cast-on" is a good cast-on for making socks and mittens that start at the toe or fingertip. Even though it's a little bit tricky to do, the result is very neat and invisible.

On two needles, wind the yarn so that it forms 8 loops on each needle.

Without changing the orientation of the needles, knit the loops thus formed on the upper ndl, without dropping the loops from the lower ndl.

Turn the work, and on the same ndl that you just knit, purl a row.

The loops are still on the lower ndl.

Turn the work, knit a row on the upper ndl (the same ndl).

The loops on the lower ndl are slightly stretched. Pull on the stitches to tighten them.

This time, transpose your work. The ndl with 3 knitted rows is now on the bottom, and you have the unworked loops on top.

Knit these loops, being careful to knit the stitches through the back loop, because they are twisted in the wrong direction, and if you bring the strand in front, you are going to have twisted stitches.

Now you are going to work in the round.

1st dpn: m1, k4

2nd dpn: k4, m1

3rd dpn: m1, k4

4th dpn: k4, m1

You now have 5 sts on each ndl.

Work one rnd without increases.

On the next rnd:

1st dpn: p1, m1, k4

2nd dpn: k4, m1, p1

3rd dpn: p1, m1, k4

4th dpn: k4, m1, p1

Continue doing the increases every other rnd until you have the desired number of sts.

Your figure eight cast-on looks like this.