Long Tail Cast On

This cast on is fast and neat once you get the hand of it. You may also see it referred to as the slingshot cast on.

Before you make your slip knot you will need to leave a “long tail” that will accommodate the stitches you are making. The tail must be roughly three times the width of your finished pieces of knitting. For instance, if you want your knitting to be 10 inches wide, leave a tail of 30 inches plus 6 for weaving in = 36 total.


Make your slip knot, leaving the appropriate length of yarn for the tail. Place the slip knot on one of your needles and snug it up by tugging lightly on the yarn tails. Hold the needle in your right hand with the needle tip pointing to the left.


The bulk of the work is done with the right needle. Grasp the two yarn ends below the slip knot in your left hand. Push your left hand thumb and forefinger through the two strands (the long tail should be lying over your thumb, the working yarn over your forefinger).


Spread the fingers apart and lower the needle so that the yarn makes a V between the thumb and forefinger. You can use the forefinger of your right hand to hold the slip knot on the needle.


Pass the needle under the yarn around the thumb (1), over the top of the yarn around the forefinger (2), and back through the yarn around the thumb (3).


Draw the thumb out from the yarn loop and tug lightly on the yarn tails to tighten up your stitch.

Repeat these steps until you have cast on the required number of stitches.