This tutorial is going to walk you through the steps of both Right Cross (RC) and Left Cross (LC) cables, using four stitches. In cable symbol terminology, it works out to 2/2 RC and 2/2 LC, wherein 2 stitches are going to cross 2 other stitches. I recommend using this technique for any cable less than a total stitch count of ten.

Step One

Choosing Directions First

An RC Cable means the first 2 stitches need to be pushed to the back and the last 2 sts are crossing over the front of them to the right. So, first things first, you’re going to insert your knitting needle into the last 2 sts in the front.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

An LC Cable means the first 2 stitches are going to be crossing over the front of the last 2 sts to the left. Here, you’re going to insert your knitting needle into the last 2 sts behind the work.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

Step Two

Pinch and Pull

For RC: With the thumb and forefinger, pinch all 4 stitches together as you slowly pull the left-hand knitting needle out of the stitches. Don’t gasp! It will be ok. Pinch hard and you’ll see 2 “free” stitches hanging out at the back of the right-hand knitting needle.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

For LC: With the thumb and forefinger, pinch all 4 stitches together as you slowly pull the left-hand knitting needle out of the stitches. Remember, breathe! Pinch hard and you’ll see 2 “free” stitches hanging out at the front of the right-hand knitting needle.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

Step Three

Begin to Cross

For RC: Going behind the 2 stitches on the right-hand needle, insert the left-hand knitting needle back into the 2 “free” stitches.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

For LC: Going in front of the 2 stitches on the right-hand needle, insert the left-hand knitting needle back into the 2 “free” stitches.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

Step Four

Finish the Cross

For both RC and LC: Slip the 2 stitches from the right-hand needle back onto the left-hand needle, being careful that they sit correctly and are not twisted.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

What we’ve done is switch the placement of the stitches, crossing them in their right/left directions before working them.

Step Five

Knit As Normal

For both RC and LC: Now, knit those 4 stitches as normal.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

And just like that, you’ve worked cables without a cable needle.

Cable without a Cable Needle Tutorial from SweetGeorgia Yarns.

With a little practice, you’ll find yourself whipping out these wonderfully textural stitches in no time, making patterns like Aine or Acacia even more fun and interesting than before.