Technique: Knitting Cables – Cross 2 in Back – C2B

Read a Knitting Pattern for a C2B Cable

When you read a knitting pattern with cables, you will quite often see cables that are 4 stitches wide, with two stitches crossing to the right over the other two stitches.

C2B Cable

C2B Cable

The abbreviation may be either C2B (Cross 2 in Back) or C2R (Cross 2 to make a Right-slanting cable). Occasionally, you will see it is C4B (Cable 4-wide crossing 2 in back) or C4R (Cable 4-wide Right slant).

Yes, this can be confusing! The only thing that I can tell you is that usually the designer or pattern writer will define which abbreviation he/she is using and what it means. This was discussed a bit in the General Information about Knitting Cables post.

How to Knit a C2B Cable

Knitting the C2B Cable: step 1 (first 2 stitches onto cable needle)

The first step for the C2B cable is to slip the first two stitches PURL-WISE on the holding needle (usually the left-hand needle) onto a cable needle.

This photo shows the cable needle inserted into those stitches prior to slipping them off of the holding needle.

C2B: Insert Cable Needle into First 2 Stitches of Cable

C2B: Insert Cable Needle into First 2 Stitches of Cable

And this photo shows those two stitches removed from the holding needle.

C2B: First 2 stitches of Cable now on Cable Needle

C2B: First 2 stitches of Cable now on Cable Needle


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Knitting the C2B Cable: step 2 (cable needle in back, knit next 2 stitches)

Let the cable needle hang behind your needles, and knit the next 2 stitches.

This photo shows those 2 stitches knitted, and the cable needle hanging behind.

C2B: Last 2 stitches of Cable Knitted; First 2 hanging behind

C2B: Last 2 stitches of Cable Knitted; First 2 hanging behind

Knitting the C2B Cable: step 3 (get ready with cable needle stitches)

At this point, there are two options for getting those stitches on the cable needle into an appropriate position.

One option is to slide them on the cable needle to the opposite end from where they were slipped. In this case, you will knit these stitches from the cable needle. Make sure you don’t twist the cable needle.

Another option is to slip them back onto the holding needle, again purl-wise. That way, you’re knitting stitches from the normal holding needle.

This photo shows the second option, starting to slip the stitches back onto the holding needle. Make sure that you don’t twist the cable needle.

C2B: Start to Transfer Stitches Back To Holding Needle

C2B: Start to Transfer Stitches Back To Holding Needle

And this photo shows the stitches back onto the holding needle.

C2B: Stitches Back on Holding Needle

C2B: Stitches Back on Holding Needle

Knitting the C2B cable: step 4 (knit the crossed stitches)

The last step is simply to knit those stitches that used to be on the cable needle.

Again, make sure that while those stitches were on the cable needle, you didn’t twist the cable needle.

This photo shows the cable completed.

C2B: Knit Stitches that were on Cable Needle - Cable Complete

C2B: Knit Stitches that were on Cable Needle - Cable Complete

And that’s all there is to a C2B cable. It causes a slant to the right.


For an example of a pattern stitch that uses the C2B cable (and its partner, the C2F Cable), check out the Horseshoe Cable stitch pattern.

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2 Responses to Technique: Knitting Cables – Cross 2 in Back – C2B

  1. yohan fritz says:

    It would be nice if there was a video. The explanation and pictures were very good and helpful.

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