Holiday scarfing begins…

chado1982's picture

…and I don’t mean the food!!

So, I decided that I’ve been here long enough that I should start posting about projects that I’m working on. I’d like to apologize upfront for the fact that I’m really no where near an advance knitter. Consequently, for a while, my project postings will most likely be some pretty basic stuff. That being said, here goes nothing…

Being quite new to the knitting world, I thought it would be a good idea to try to knit some scarves as presents for this year’s winter holiday season. I may live to regret this ambition given the large number of scarves I’ve committed myself to knitting in such a short amount of time but I figured that it was a good way to have some fun, get more practice, learn some new knitting techniques and give a gift that wasn’t mass produced to some of my family members and close friends.

Anywho, I decided that interspersed amongst the inevitable garter stitch scarves that I will produce, I wanted to try some techniques and patterns that would be new for me, hence the learning exercise in all of this. I determined that one of the things I wanted to tackle in these present projects was cables. I picked a fairly easy and plain pattern that included cables in order to start on my path towards cabling bliss. This is a photo of what I’ve completed so far on my first cable scarf…

As I said, the pattern is really simple – just some ribbing and some very regular cables. The pattern that I’m using came from a Lion Brand book that I spotted while at my local arts and crafts store looking for some really easy care yarn to use. Now, although I’m just a beginner knitter, I’m a bit of a yarn snob. The people, for whom I’m making these gifts, however, aren’t really dry cleaning/hand washing kinds of folks. Hence, for this particular project, I’m using some Lion Brand Wool East Thick & Quick yarn – machine washable and dryable. Thankfully, on some US13 needles, it’s knitting up pretty quickly.

I’m almost finished knitting up one of the two skeins I’m going to need to make a decent sized scarf, even though the pattern only called for 1 skein. I’m very pleased with the results so far. I really love the way cables look and I’m so excited that I can actually make them ^_^ I’ve included a close-up shot of some of the cables just for fun!!

I do have a question, though. Does anyone know if I could get cable needles that are designed for bigger needles? The ones that I have and am using are made for up to, I think, US8 needles. Anyway, I think that’s it for now…

^_^ Chad
*carpe fibras


TomH's picture

Love your scarf. Good job.

Love your scarf. Good job. Keep knitting.

By the way, I'm old fashioned I guess. I always use a J hook when knitting cables. I just like that drooping, hanging thing when I'm knitting cables.

FrankMO's picture

I love the pattern. What is

I love the pattern. What is the name of the pattern? I have wanted to try cables but have had lots of stops and starts. That looks like just what I need. Your scarf is beautiful. Great color too.

...Just keep knitting, knitting, knitting... What do we do we knit, knit, knit...

Tallguy's picture

You don't need a cable

You don't need a cable needle to do cables. I use whatever I have on hand next to me.. doesn't make any difference what you use to remove those stitches out of the way until you are ready for them. And I don't use anything most of the time for cables now. There’s no need!

Who washes scarves anyway??

Bill's picture

Sometimes the proper tools

Sometimes the proper tools DO help...yesterday I was using a large hairpin as a cable needle...and it really wasn't a good substitute...

chunkiejunkie's picture

The scarf looks great! I've

The scarf looks great! I've been knitting a bunch with wool ease thick and quick lately. It's economical so I don't have to stress about yarn getting wasted and if I run out of a color, there are 3 arts and crafts stores near by that carry it. I picked up some more today at Jo-Ann Fabrics since it's on sale there - 2 balls for $8.

superi's picture

actually for this project

actually for this project you really don't need a cable needle and for most cables under like 4 stiches. With your right hand needle grab the back two stitches on the left needle then quickly slip the first two off and then back two on the right needle without josseling the knitting. Once the back two are slipped on the right needle quickly pick up the front two dropped sitches with the left needle and slipp that back two stitches onto the left needle and beging knittin. Works for me... i believe there is a video of this on if my quick explaination is confusing.

chado1982's picture

Thanks for the info!! I

Thanks for the info!! I actually tried this method as well but, because of the tightness of my knitting (and the fact that I'm not very good with fixing my mistakes if I accidentally lose a stitch using the method you mentioned), the cable needle method works better for me. I just wish the needle was a bit thicker.

Excellent job!

Excellent job!

chado1982's picture



Forgot to tell you -

Forgot to tell you - Prym/Inox manufacture straight and cranked cable needles for sizes up to 15mm. I found them at

but you should have stockists in the USA.

chado1982's picture

Thanks for the resource ^_^

Thanks for the resource ^_^

Bill's picture

I prefer the J hook type of

I prefer the J hook type of cable needle...and that doesn't have to be as big as the knitting needle...

chado1982's picture

I might have to try those.

I might have to try those. I now see that Clover makes some for US11 to US15 needles.

For a first time cabler

For a first time cabler these are looking really good. I just hope the recipients appreciate the work you are putting in. I certainly would.

chado1982's picture

Thank you so much!! I hope

Thank you so much!! I hope so, too. I'm not really holding my breath, though... :P

Your tension is quite good.

Your tension is quite good. I had a devil of a time with the stitches coming out of the cable being looser than the cables themselves, which caused those outside stitches to be uneven. Yours looks great. Have you seen the deeper cable hooks? I use those because I have problems with the cables slipping off the kind you are using in the picture. You're doing great, man. Christmas is still two months away so keep cranking (but watch your wrists).

chado1982's picture

Thanks so much for the

Thanks so much for the compliment!! I think that the fact that I tend to knit pretty tightly has helped me with keeping the cables well tensioned. I haven't seen any more deeply curved cable needles in my travels. I have had a few problems with losing stitches as well. Metal tends to be slippery, though. That and the fact that I'm using US13 with a cable needle meant for use on up to US8. I just have to be really careful...

MMario's picture

a friend of mine just made

a friend of mine just made herself some cable needles using fimo - the bakable clay stuff. rolled a rod of appropriate width and length, shaped the bend into it (she actually made it a double bend --^v^--) and baked it.

Viola! a custom cable needle!
MMario - ambiguity is cultivated, it doesn't happen in a vacuum!

MMario's picture

A friend of mine suggested

A friend of mine suggested getting a short length of appropriate diameter dowel and using a dremel to round the ends and roughen the surface.
MMario - ambiguity is cultivated, it doesn't happen in a vacuum!

chado1982's picture

That's a really great idea!!

That's a really great idea!! Unfortunately, I don't currently have a Dremel... Perhaps I'll have to correct that shortcoming soon ^_^

TomH's picture

Looks great. You doing a

Looks great. You doing a great job. The scarves will make perfect presents. You don't need to apologize for the Lion Brand yarn. I'm sure many us have used Lion Brand yarn even though we also have a bit of yarn snobbishness in us. Sometimes we have to think about the recipients. Sometimes we have to think about budget. And sometimes we just have to use what's available at the moment. Keep knitting!

chado1982's picture

Thanks so much!! I agree

Thanks so much!! I agree about having to think about the recipient if you're going to make something for a specific person. I think that making something that is fitted to a person's personality and lifestyle is key to making a great present.