I like to use this cast on in place of the usual invisible cast on for items that are knitted flat and grafted at the end (like these baby legwarmers). It uses a long(ish) circular instead of waste yarn. Transferring your held stitches for the finishing graft is a snap, since they are already on the cable attached to your needles. It also works well as a carefree and indistinguishable alternative to Judy’s Magic Cast On when working in the round using the Magic Loop method.
To start, tie a slip knot, leaving about 6″ of tail to make weaving in ends easier during finishing. Hold both ends of a 32″ circular needle parallel in your left hand, and place your slip knot on the bottom needle.
Take the working yarn and starting from the back, wrap around both needles, wrapping up and over the top and down in front. Each full wrap counts as one stitch cast on.
Wrap as many times as the cast on calls for, then pull the bottom needle out so its stitches are resting on the cable. Using the (now-dangling) end of your circular, prepare to knit the first stitch.
At this point, if you are using this as a provisional cast on, simply start knitting the first row of your project. When you are ready to graft at the end, slide the provisional stitches back onto your empty needle (essentially reversing the motions from when you prepared to knit). When you come to the slip knot from the beginning of the cast on (this could be at either end of your graft,) drop it and pull the tail to undo the knot.
If you are using this as an alternative to Judy’s, knit the stitches from the first needle before proceeding with round 1 of your project. As you knit, the first time you come to the slip knot, slip it (do not knit or purl into it) – this will help keep things stable and organized at the start. The second time you come to the slip knot, drop it from the needle and pull your yarn tail to undo the knot.