Sunday, December 6, 2009
So, I have wanted to learn how to knit cables since I started knitting. But I needed cable needles first. I found one way of making cables without a cable needle (here: http://www.knittinghelp.com/videos/advanced-techniques), but I don't trust myself. But, on the same website, I found a way to make your own cable needles out of small dowels from the hardware store! I had some lying around the house from a school project, but they cost less then a dollar to make. All you need is a wood dowel, a pencil sharpener, and if you're horrible at pencil sharpeners, some sandpaper to smooth the tips.
Note: you can make knitting needles, even double-pointed ones for circular knitting, in this same way. Just cut longer sections of dowels, and use a gauge checker to know what size it is.
First, measure out about 3 1/2 inches on the dowel. You only need the cable needle to be about three inches, but you want to give a little extra length so it doesn't turn out too short.
Then, after you have it cut, simply sharpen both ends into a nice long point. Like a pencil.
If your sharpened ends are rough and catch on the yarn, then you need to sand them. Start with a bigger grade of sand paper, like a 150 grade. Then go to a smaller grade, like 110. It could be done then, but if i still snags the yarn, keep going down to a smaller grade of sandpaper till it doesn't anymore.
And there you have it! A basic, inexpensive cable needle. This will enable you to create cables in your knitting fairly easily.
Now it's time to learn how to use your new needle.
The simple basics of cable knitting are that you knit all the cable stitches, and purl all the other ones. It's really not that hard.
Cast on 14 stitches.
*we're going to purl the first four, knit the next six, purl the last four.
purl the next row completely.
go back to the * and do that pattern again
Continue in that style (pattern row, purl row) until your third purl row. Your next row will be the turn row, not the usual pattern row.
Purl the first four stitches as usual. Then, slide the first three knit stitches onto your cable needle. To make a right-turning cable, put your cable needle behind your knitting. For a left-turning cable, keep it in front. I'm going to do a left-turning cable this time.
Knit the next three. Then knit the next three directly off of your cable needle.
Purl the next row.
Do the * pattern for the next row.
Continue alternating between the pattern and purl rows until you are ready to put in another turn.
When you do put in another turn, make it go the same direction.
And there you have it! That's how you make a cable! Cast off when you feel comfortable cabeling, and save your practice piece forever!
Imagined by Kim at 2:36 PM