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Cable

A Cable or Cable Stitch is a decorative technique that overlaps the fabric creating the appearance of a twisted rope or a braid. It requires a cable needle (also known as a cable stitch holder) or you can use a spare double pointed needle to serve the same purpose. To see our collection of cable needles, please click here.

Cables come in all shapes and sizes. Changing the number and orientation of the stitches, as well as the frequency in which you work a cable row all effect the look of your cable. Above is an image from the Cable Back Shell of a 22-stitch cable held to the back and repeated every 20th row. But before we get to that project, let's take a look at the fundamentals laid out below.

Basically, to create a cable you skip over a number of stitches, work another chunk of stitches out of order and then return to the skipped stitches, creating an overlap in the fabric. The stitches that are skipped over are temporarily held on a cable needle to either the front or the back of the piece.

Holding stitches to the back creates a right-leaning twist in the fabric, and holding stitching to the front creates a left-learning twist. Below we demonstrate the basics by first showing a 6-stitch cable held to the back (C6B), then a 6-stitch cable held to the front (C6F).

C6B: Cable 6 Back

The cable below is worked across a total of 6 stitches.

Slip 3 stitches purlwise onto a cable needle and let them hang in the back of your work.

Work across the next 3 stitches that are on the knitting needle.

Then, sliding the 3 on-hold stitches to the right end of the cable stitch holder, work the stitches off the cable needle.

After the cable row (the row in which I did a cable stitch), I worked 9 rows.

C6F: Cable 6 Front

The cable below is worked across a total of 6 stitches.

To cable to the front, follow the instructions above, except after slipping 3 stitches onto the cable needle, let the cable needle hang in the front of your work, rather than the back. Work the following 3 stitches, then work the stitches off the cable needle.

After the cable row (the row in which I did a cable stitch), I worked 9 rows.

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