Friday, December 10, 2010

New Video - Make a Cast-On Rag for Your Ultimate Sweater Machine

Admittedly, this video isn't very glamorous, but it shows how to do a hem, how to use ravel cord, and how to do a different cast-off.  The main point of the video is to give you another option to use when casting on just a few stitches.

When I use theit USM it always seems like I need some cast-on options other than the long cast-on cuff.  Yes, you can buy a short cast-on cuff, but why not knit a cast-on rag?  It doesn't take very long, and since I've included a hem at the bottom, you can use that hem to put in just the right amount of weight for whatever you'd like to knit.

You can stuff rolls of pennies in that hem, or fishing weights, or sewing weights, or metal bars, or you can just use the cast-on rag to hang other knitting machine weights.  Once you make the rag, you can use it over and over.  I use cast-on rags sometimes on the other machines, as well.

Most knitting machines come with ravel cord and explain ravel cord's uses, but if you're a USM user, you might not have used this method, and it really is a very good time-saver.  By buying Omega nylon cord at Hobby Lobby, you can have a pretty much endless supply of very good ravel cord (for your other machines, too).  I noticed it is on sale this week.  I use this stuff, rayon yarn, or even whatever waste yarn I'm working with, for ravel cord all the time.  If you can't get rayon or nylon cord, well, crochet cotton isn't a bad alternative - just not as good as the slippery rayon or nylon.


  1. Thank you, Diana, for this video on making and using a cast-on rag. This is something that is so useful and easy, and yet so seldom covered in manuals and other instructions. Once again, your video tips are incredibly useful and helpful!

  2. I know it's more work and takes more yarn(I think), but I do wish there was a video for the bias knit cast on rag. I have tried from 'written' instructions and it's not that easy, but I know it should be.
    Thanks for all you do for machine knitters...I got several of your dvd's and love them, you are a great teacher.

  3. I looked at my local hobby lobby for the nylon thread you suggested, and no one knew what I was talking about. I wandered into Lowes and discovered Mason's line that is real slippery. It cost about the same price as what you found at hobby lobby.

  4. Our Hobby Lobby has carried the Omega nylon cord for years, and yes, it works very well.

  5. Hi, Diana! You are an incredible resource! Thank you for sharing all your knowledge and skills! I haven't sat down to my USM since late winter and came up with a blank mind yesterday when I wanted to begin a scarf project. (Not much was going well yesterday, so I sat down in a safe spot and knit by hand. Remembering to breathe!)
    I found the pattern and your video this a.m. and am ready to try "from the top."
    Thank you!!! pj stitches!
    Paulette J (from overcast sw Missouri)