As part of the preparations for my upcoming Yorkshire Knitting Tour, I recently examined the Yorkshire Dales gloves in the KCG collection, as well as photos of several other extant Yorkshire Dales gloves. I was struck by the cuff beginning in the KCG pair, and saw that all the other surviving pairs, excepting the fringed George Walton Gloves, have the same beginning. Above the base stitches in the black and white cuffs there is a line of black yarn running around the cuff that stands proud of the background. Until I had experimented with casting on for a two-colour single rib cuff myself, I couldn’t work out how this effect was achieved.

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Note the direction of the twisted loops that form the bottom of the cast-on. This was not a standard long-tail or thumb cast-on.

It turned out, as I found from experimentation, that the raised black line is the natural consequence of working two-colour single rib from a row of black stitches.  The cast-on itself is indeed like a two-colour version of long-tail cast-on, but with the needle inserted into the thumb loop from above, not below, with the thumb yarn being white, and the finger yarn being black. I started with both yarns fastened together in a slip knot that I undid after the first round.

Having finished re-creating the beginning of a Dales glove, which I have since dubbed ‘The Dales Cast-On’, I went on to create a wristlet, featuring shepherd’s plaid and midge and fly patterns, both of which feature in early Dales gloves.

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