Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

Whether you know them as two-stitch cables, 1×1 cables, crossed stitches or twisted cables, these little design elements are perfect for forming all kinds of geometric patterns, like the ones used in the gorgeous Japanese stitch patterns.

Depending on the pattern, the mini-cables with stitches crossed to the left are called “cross two left” (C2L), “cross two front” (C2F), “twist two left” (T2L), “twist two front” (T2F), “left 1/1 cable” (1/1LC) or “two-stitch left cable” (2-st LC).

All these names mean the same thing – switching the position of two stitches so that they form a diagonal line slanting to the left.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

When we want the stitches to form a diagonal line that slants to the right, we make “cross two right” (C2R), “cross two back” (C2B), “twist two right” (T2R), “twist two back” (T2B), “right 1/1 cable” (1/1RC) or “two-stitch right cable” (2-st RC).

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

We can make these twisted cables just as we make other types of cables – with the help of a cable needle. Or, we can cross the stitches first and then knit them one by one. In this case, there is no need for a cable needle.

In this tutorial, we’ll take a look at both options – crossing two stitches with and without a cable needle.

If you prefer to learn from a video tutorial, click here or scroll to the bottom of this page to watch the embedded version of the video.

CROSSING STITCHES WITH A CABLE NEEDLE

Let’s start with a two-stitch cable crossed to the left.

TWO-STITCH LEFT CABLE

STEP 1

When you get to the point where you need to cross stitches, slip the first stitch from the left needle to a cable needle. Do it purlwise to make sure the stitch is not twisted. Watch how to do it in this part of the video tutorial.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

Bring the cable needle (with the slipped stitch on it) to the front of the work.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

STEP 2

Knit the next stitch.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

Note that some stitch patterns may require you to purl this stitch. Read the pattern instructions carefully and follow them to a tee.

STEP 3

Knit the stitch that is sitting on the cable needle. There are two ways to do it – you can either slip the stitch back to the left needle and knit it from the needle, or you can knit it directly from the cable needle. Try both ways and choose the one that feels more comfortable to you.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

TWO-STITCH RIGHT CABLE

When we want to make a two-stitch cable crossed to the right, we’ll follow the same steps but we’ll keep the cable needle at the back of the work in the first step.

Here’s how it works step-by-step:

STEP 1

When you get to the two stitches that you plan to cross, slip the first one purlwise to a cable needle. Then move the cable needle to the very back of the work so that it is not even visible from the right side of the work. It is demonstrated in this part of the video tutorial.

This way, it won’t be in the way when we knit the next stitch in step 2 and we won’t have issues with managing the working yarn.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

STEP 2

Knit the next stitch as if the slipped stitch does not exist.

I say that because this step could be a bit confusing – we might not be sure whether the working yarn should be at the front or at the bak of the slipped stitch.

When the slipped stitch is moved all the way back and we don’t see it, there is no confusion. We simply bring the yarn across the gap created by the hidden stitch and knit the next one.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

STEP 3

Now bring the slipped stitch from its hiding place and work it according to the instructions in your pattern. You can either slip this stitch to the left needle first, or you can work it right from the cable needle. It’s totally up to you.

If the pattern tells you to knit this stitch, bring the yarn to the back of the work and knit it. For purling, keep the yarn at the front of the work and purl the slipped stitch.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

Now let’s see how we can get the same result without using a cable needle.

CROSSING STITCHES WITHOUT A CABLE NEEDLE

TWO-STITCH LEFT CABLE

STEP 1

With the yarn at the back of the work, slip two stitches of the cable one by one knitwise (insert the right needle into the stitch from left to right). Here’s how to do it.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

STEP 2

Insert the tip of the left needle from right to left into both slipped stitches.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

Take the right needle out leaving the stitches on the left needle. This way we crossed two stitches without twisting them and without taking them off knitting needles.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

If the stitches are tight and it’s hard to insert the left needle into them, it helps to move the stitches closer to the tip of the right needle.

STEP 3

Knit these stitches one by one and you will see that they form a lovely left-slanting cable.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

As we’ve already discussed, some stitch pattern might instruct you to purl the first stitch. If that’s the case, follow the pattern instructions and purl 1, then knit 1 in this step.

TWO-STITCH RIGHT CABLE

STEP 1

Insert the tip of the right needle from left to right into two first stitches on the left needle as if you plan to knit them together.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

Then take the left needle out of those stitches leaving them on the right needle.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

STEP 2

Slip these two stitches one by one back to the left needle. It is easier to do it purlwise. It means that we insert the tip of the left needle into each stitch from left to right.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

STEP 3

Because we chose not to overcomplicate this technique and slip stitches purlwise in the previous step, the stitches are now twisted. To make sure they don’t look twisted in your project, knit these stitches through the back loop, as it is demonstrated in this part of the video tutorial.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

If your pattern tells you to purl the second stitch instead of knitting it, purl it as usual, through the front loop. This stitch will stay at the back of the cable cross and no one will ever know whether that stitch is twisted or not.

If you want to avoid knitting through the back loop, insert the tip of the left needle from right to left into each of the two stitches when you slip them to the left needle in step 2. Watch how to do it in this part of the video.

Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle

As you see, these mini-cables look the same whether we cross them with the help of a cable needle or not. Feel free to use any of these methods when you add two-stitch cables to your project.


If you enjoyed this tutorial,
here’s something else you might find helpful:

“Neat Side Edges” Book

Learn twelve ways to make side edges of a knitted project nice and tidy. Plus, ways to fix side edges, and a way to improve edges of finished projects.


Happy knitting!

Maryna Shevchenko - www.10rowsaday.com

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Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle | 10 rows a day
Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle | 10 rows a day
Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle | 10 rows a day
Simple Way to Cross Two Stitches With and Without a Cable Needle | 10 rows a day