How to Knit the Turkish Cast On

The Turkish Cast On is my favorite way to start knitting toe up socks. The socks look like they start from nothing; it’s a very smooth cast on, as shown in the photo below:


Tip of the toe started with the Turkish Cast On

Many knitters like Judy’s Magic Cast On, but that sometimes leaves a nub at the corner when I’m using it for socks, which I don’t like. I find I get more beautiful results more consistently with the Turkish Cast On, which is surprisingly easy to do. A knit-along video tutorial is below. 

How To Knit the Turkish Cast On

To following are the steps to knit the Turkish Cast On:

  • Hold both the needles together with the tips facing left.
  • Tie a slip knot in the yarn and put on the top needle.
  • Wrap the working yarn around both needles for half as many cast on stitches as needed. If you want to knit along with the video below, wrap the yarn around 4 full times. (The yarn goes around the back of the needles from the slip knot, under the needles, back up the front, over the top to the back and straight down. That’s 1 wrap.)
  • Wrap the yarn around your fingers as if to knit, securing the yarn in place. Rotate the needles so the tips are pointing to the right. The working yarn will be coming off the top toward the back.
  • Slip the bottom needle out to be able to knit across. Knit across the stitches on the top needle. (4 stitches on the top needle in my example.)
  • Pull the bottom needle back into work and turn so needles are pointing to the right.  
  • Pull out the bottom needle and get ready to knit across the top needle. The first stitch is the slip knot, which you will drop off the end and out of work; you won’t need that anymore now that the stitches are anchored in place. Knit across the stitches. (4 stitches on the top needle, 8 stitches total.)
  • Knit across each needle again. 
  • Pull the bottom needle into work, so all the stitches are on the actual needles, not just the cables. Both tips should be pointed to the right. Fold the work in half with the knit side facing out and purl side folded into the middle. 
  • To continue knitting your socks using the magic loop method: pull out the back needle, the one with the stitch that has the working yarn attached. You’ll knit in the stitches on the front needle. 

Video Tutorial 

The following video shows how to do the Turkish Cast On:

Want to Give it a Try?

The following lesson shows how to knit toe up socks starting with the Turkish Cast On:

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