While Two! is drying on the blocking board, I have a moment to pull together a tutorial on the picot cast-on that I call for in the girl’s version of the One! Two! Three! and Four! Five! Six! patterns.
The picot cast-on is worked using the cable cast-on. (Click on photos to make them larger.)
Cable cast-on starts with a slip knot.
The second stitch is cast on using the knitted cast-on. It’s not as confusing as it sounds. Slip your knitting needle into the loop of the slip knot and wrap the yarn around the needle as if to knit. Pull the stitch through the slip knot stitch but don’t remove the slip knot stitch from the left-hand needle. Slip the newly created stitch onto the left-hand needle.
You now have two stitches on the needle.
Now you can start the cable cast-on in earnest. Insert your empty needle between the two stitches on the needle. Wrap the yarn around your needle as if to knit and pull the stitch through to the right side on your right-hand needle. Slip that newly created stitch onto the left hand needle. Repeat until you have as many stitches as you need …
… in this case, five stitches.
** Now comes the picot part of the cast-on. Knit two stitches.
Slip the first stitch over the second stitch which basically binds it off.
Slip the next stitch from the left-hand needle to the right-hand needle (slip it purlwise).
Then bind off that stitch.
Return the last stitch to the left-hand needle. One picot bump completed.
Using the cable cast-on, cast on 6 stitches (according to my pattern instructions) and then repeat the picot bump starting from **.
You can alter the space between the picots by casting on more or fewer stitches. You can also alter the size of the picot by binding off more stitches. My pattern uses two-stitch picots separated by four cast-on stitches (2 + 4 = 6 sts to cast on after the picot bump). If you wanted three-stitch picots separated by six stitches then you would cast on nine stitches (3 + 6 = 9) between the picots (as in the photo above).
The picots make such a pretty little edging on girly garments.