It happens. Sometimes, you run out of tail! When casting on 180 stitches for a sweater, you run out of tail at stitch number 175. Aarrgh!
But don’t worry – you do not have to start your long-tail cast-on over.
You can just use the backwards-loop cast-on for the last few stitches – save your knitting and your sanity!
Because a backwards-loop cast-on only uses the working yarn and not the tail, is the easiest way to add stitches in a pinch, whether you are casting on for a sweater or adding extra stitches for a buttonhole or picot bind-off.
Use The Backwards Loop Cast-On To Add Extra Stitches
Now that you know the backwards-loop method for emergencies encountered when casting on, here’s another sanity-saving trick for the other end of your project.
I know I always tell you to leave a six-inch tail after you bind off, but… Let’s say you need to weave in your ends on your knitting but you accidentally have only two inches of tail left to weave in.
That’s okay! I have another trick to pass on to you that I’m so glad I discovered.
To Weave A Short Tail, Weave The Tapestry Needle In First, Then Thread The Needle
The trick is to weave the tapestry needle through the stitches before you thread the yarn through – then pull. Here’s a short video demonstrating the technique:
See? Now even if you have too short of a tail, you can still weave it in securely and correctly, just by inserting your tapestry needle before threading it.
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If you like these tips for casting on and weaving in short ends, let me know by leaving a comment.