Cables

Cables are simply a way of twisting two sets of stitches or carrying stitches across the fabric. There are two ways of moving the stitches; cabling and crossing. Stitches are cabled when all the stitches are knitted, but stitches are crossed when knit stitches are moved over a background of purl stitches. In patterns, cables are twisted to the back or front, while crossed stitches move right or left.

The two techniques to learn are moving the stitches at the back and moving them at the front. This is done by holding the stitches on a cable needle either at the back or the front of the work. This simple cable twists two sets of knit stitches, using four stitches.

Basic abbreviations for cables...

C4F cable four front C4B cable four back Cr4L cross four left Cr4R cross four right

When following a pattern with cables, the designer will explain how to work the cables under special abbreviations at the start of the pattern.

Cable four front (C4F)

1 Slip the next two stitches from the left-hand needle on to a cable needle and hold at the front of the work.

Cable four back (C4B)

2 Knit the next two stitches on the left-hand needle, then knit the two stitches from the cable needle.

1 Slip the next two stitches from the left-hand needle on to a cable needle and hold at the back of the work.

2 Knit the next two stitches on the left-hand needle, then knit the two stitches from the cable needle.

More cables...

C6F or C6B is worked by slipping three stitches on to the cable needle and then knitting three stitches. C8F or C8B is worked with four stitches in each part of the cable.The more stitches there are in a cable, the more rows there are between twists. So C4F or C4B has three rows straight, C6F or C6B has five rows straight and so on.To make a looser cable, work more rows straight between twists.

Instead of twisting stitches to form cables, stitches can be crossed, carrying two knit stitches to the left or right, over a background of purl stitches.

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