One of my favorite things about anything knit is the texture. I LOVE a chunky, cozy, complex, and inviting texture.
Cable knits totally fill this need of mine.
There’s just something fascinating about creating a rich and intricate texture by manipulating loops of yarn, using only the two basic stitches of knit and purl. Because any knit stitch pattern is really only using knits or purls in different combinations to produce endless textures and shapes. Knowing this, I find myself no longer intimidated by trying complex stitch patterns. If I know how to knit and purl, then I’ll know how to do any pattern thrown at me!
A fun way to practice new techniques is by making swatches. A swatch is just a small sampling of knit “fabric”. By making a small swatch (I recommend knitting up a 6” by 6” square) you save yourself from having to make an entire product to test and try something new. There are numerous advantages to making swatches:
practicing new stitch patterns
testing your gauge for a new pattern
warming up to new yarn and/or needles
playing with color combinations
BASIC CABLE STITCH
This basic cable stitch is a fun way to prove to yourself that you can do more complicated stitches than stockinette or garter. I challenge you to make a swatch and see for yourself!
Cast on a multiple of 5 plus 1 on straight needles. (Enough to make at least a 6” row in the yarn and needles of your choice)
Row 1: *P1, K4*, repeat between *‘s, ending K1
Row 2: *K1, P4*, repeat between *‘s, ending P1
Row 3: *P1, as if to purl, slip the next 2 sts to a cable needle and hold at the front of the work, K the next 2 sts, K the 2 sts from the cable needle*, repeat between *’s across, ending P1
Row 4: same as row 2
Repeat these four rows 6” more for a swatch of your cable pattern stitch!
This video here on Youtube shows how to use a cable needle. One thing to point out though, is that she puts her cable needle with stitches to the back of her work, and in this little swatch practice I’ve written here, in row 3 it says to put your cable needle to the front of your work. Both ways work! But if you experiment with doing them both ways, you will notice that it affects which way your “twist” goes.
Let me know if you give this a try! I’d love to hear what you think and cheer you on!
Want to try some of my FREE PATTERNS?
Want to try another fun swatch? Here’s the Bubble Stitch.
Ready to knit a sweater? These sweater kits are great for beginners!