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Provisional Cast On

Here is a little piece of advice when it comes to doing provisional cast ons and knitting in the opposite direction. Remember, when you do a short row toe it means picking up your provisional cast on stitches so when you have stocking stitch going in both directions, what you are picking up when you go downwards, i.e. in the opposite direction is NOT the actual stitch going in the right direction, it is half a stitch to the side of it...so some people find when they come to pick up say 20 sts that they cast on, going in the opposite direction it may only come up as 19.....thereby looking as if half a stitch just vanished.

You might need to pick up an extra stitch if this happens.
However, if you are 'losing' more than one stitch in the opposite direction, or on your wrapping, then that is entirely different.

You don't get this anomaly with your short row heel, because when you go to pick up stitches to knit in the round again, you are not picking up from the bottom of a provisional cast on.

Generally, people don't put things like this into patterns, it gets edited out as tutorial or technique and actually for people who don't get this problem it is just downright confusing. Patterns cannot always be littered with caveats and to some degree, you have to assume a knitter has learned to do the techniques that are included. E.g., sock patterns don't always tell you exactly how to knit in the round, or how to hold your needles.

So this mystery of the disappearance of 'half a stitch' only comes up if you read a tutorial on picking up stitches in the opposite direction. Think of it like chains that are linked with threads, and the links you pick up, are actually the threads/links of the chains you were previously knitting and not the actual chain itself. So if you have 21 sts, you only need 20 'links' to hold it together.

People may also notice this anomaly when they try to pick up the edge of a ribbed garment and knit rib in the opposite direction...it does not work. And some people find this crops up in Kitchener stitch, where you join 2 edges both those edges go in different directions.

Are you even more confused now? Don't be, if you pick up one fewer stitches when travelling in the opposite direction of a prov cast on, don't worry, and just pick up one extra stitch in the corner.

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