by Laura Chau November 29, 2019

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With the re-release of Halimede, a classic top-down shallow triangular shawl with pretty panels of feather and fan, we thought it would be a good time for a tutorial on the garter tab cast-on.

The garter tab cast-on is often used for top-down triangular shawls as it's easy to work and gives a smooth, seamless look that flows into the pattern and edging. For today's tutorial, I'm using 2Tr. Gammelserie by Rauma. 

Circular needle with 3 cast on stitches.

To begin, cast on 3 stitches. I used the cable cast-on method, so that the first row is a right side row.

6 rows knitted to create a garter tab.

Knit 6 rows, turning at the end of each row, to create the garter tab.

Knit across three stitches.

On the next row, we will pick up stitches around two sides of this tab. Knit across the 3 stitches.

Garter tab with arrows pointing to the end of each garter ridge.

Then, slide the stitches on the right needle tip down onto the cord. The arrows indicate where we'll be picking up stitches along the side of the tab.

Insert the right needle tip into the side of the first garter ridge.

With the first three stitches now on the cord, rotate the work 90 degrees clockwise and insert the right needle tip into the side edge of the first garter ridge.

Wrap yarn and pick up a stitch.

Wrap the yarn and pull up a stitch.

Three stitches picked up from the side of the tab.

Continuing in the same direction, pick up 1 stitch from each garter ridge - 3 stitches.

Push all stitches down onto the cord.

Push these new pick-up stitches down onto the cord as well. 6 stitches total.

Now we will pick up stitches from the cast on edge.

Rotate the work again 90 degrees clockwise. Now we'll be picking up stitches from the 3 cast-on stitches. It can look a little crowded here but take your time to open up the stitches so you can see where to pick up. 

Insert right needle tip into cast on edge to pick up stitches.

Three stitches picked up from the cast on edge.

Pick up 1 stitch from each cast on stitch. 3 stitches. 

Completed garter tab cast on.

Garter tab cast on is complete! There are 9 stitches.

A Chinese-Canadian woman with glasses smiling at the camera.
Laura Chau

Laura is a Canadian knitter, designer, and editor.



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