Crazy for Cable Knitting (without the needle)!

cable knits - Plaits and Links Cardigan

Plaits and Links Cardigan

There are many designers who’ve produced beautiful cable patterns, but perhaps one stands out among them—Kathy Zimmerman.

Her Plaits and Links Cardigan has long been one of my favorites. Isn’t it fabulous? I would wear the heck out of it! Must … knit … faster.

Kathy’s cable knits are classic, but with contemporary elements, like the two buttons that close this cardigan. It has a swingy element while still being traditional.

One thing about cable work that’s really neat is how great it looks on men. Sometimes we struggle to knit sweaters for guys, but a cable pattern is a sure winner.

I’ve gathered some below (with a cabled blanket thrown in for those non-sweater-wearers); including a couple of vest options, in case your guy prefers vests over sweaters.

Cable Knitting PatternsClockwise from right: Rhapsody in Tweed, Skye Tweed Vest,
Notting Hill Vest, Anniversary Pullover, Saffron Cables

All of these designs are amazing, but the Anniversary Pullover has a really special story.

Kathy was looking for an anniversary gift for her husband, and she came up with this sweater design. The cables and checks represent the twists and turns of married life. The texture shifts and changes, but the overall direction is straight ahead. Isn’t that the truth?

The man (or men) in your life is sure to love one of these designs!

Cabling without a Cable Needle

I’ve always loved cable knits, but knitting them without a cable needle made me enjoy the process even more. Technical editor Joni Coniglio wrote a wonderful tutorial in the 2014 issue of Knitscene Accessories, which we’ve recently published on Knitting Daily.

My preferred method for cabling without a cable needle is Joni’s “Method 3,” shown below. Check out the entire article for the other options for this technique. In the meantime, here’s Method 3.

With the yarn in front, slip stitches 1 and 2 to the right needle. Bring the yarn to the back between the needles (Figure 1) and knit stitches 3 and 4 (Figure 2). With the left needle behind the right needle, insert left needle into back loops of stitches 1 and 2 (Figure 3). Slide all 4 stitches from the right needle, with stitches 3 and 4 unsecured in front of the left needle. With the right needle in front of the left needle, insert the right needle into stitches 3 and 4 (Figure 4). Knit stitches 1 and 2 on the left needle.

knit cables without a cable needleI hope you’ll try one of Kathy’s gorgeous patterns, and speed up the knitting process by ditching your cable needle

Happy cable month!

1KCsig

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