Knitting in the Round with Two Circular Needles
With this knitting method, you divide your stitches evenly between two circular needles and arrange them to form a circle. You knit the first half of the stitches using both needle tips of the front circular, and then knit the second half of the stitches using both needle tips of the back circular. In this way, you knit in a spiral around the outside of your work, while each set of stitches remains on the same circular needle.
After you cast on, follow these steps:
1Lay the work down on a table in front of you and take a look.
The yarn tail and working yarn should be on the left, and the first cast-on stitch should be on the right.
2Adjust your cast-on edge so that it is not twisted around the needle.
Make sure that the bottom edge of the cast on runs smoothly along the cable without looping over the needle.
3Flip the work over.
The end of the needle with the yarn tail and working yarn is on the right and the needle with the first cast-on stitch is on the left.
4Starting with the last cast-on stitch, slip half of the stitches to the second circular needle.
When moving the stitches between the needles, be sure to slip the stitches as if to purl.
5Fold your work in half so that the two circular needles are parallel to each other and the wrong sides of the cast-on edge are together.
The needle containing the first cast-on stitch should be in front (facing you), and both sets of stitches should be at the left end of the circular needles. Again, check your work to ensure that your cast-on edge is not twisted around the needles.
6Slide both sets of stitches to the right onto the cable portion of their respective circular needles. Then, holding your work in your left hand, slide just the front set of stitches further to the right until the front stitches are resting on the needle tip.
The front set of stitches is the set containing the first cast-on stitch.
7Position the working yarn so that it runs up from the last cast-on stitch to the outside of the project.
The working yarn should not pass through the center of the project.
8With your right hand, take the empty needle tip at the far end of the front circular needle and bring it into position to knit. Knit into the first stitch on the front needle to join your work. Then knit across the remaining stitches on the front needle.
Keep your first stitch or two tight to prevent a gap from forming between your needles.
9Rotate your work.
The set of unworked stitches on the back circular is now facing you.
10Slide the front set of stitches to the right until they are resting on the needle. Then slide the back set of stitches.
The stitches should be resting on the cable of the back circular needle.
11With your right hand, take the empty needle tip at the far end of the front circular needle and use it to knit the stitches on the front needle.
Remember to keep the first stitch tight. When you reach the end of these stitches, you will have worked one complete round. Note the presence of your yarn tail, which indicates where your new round begins.
12Use a stitch marker to indicate the beginning of your round if desired.
At this point, stop and check again that your work is not twisted. Verify that the cast on runs smoothly along the bottom edge of your work and does not loop over the needles at any point.
13Rotate your work again so that the stitches you are going to work next are facing you, slide the front stitches onto the needle tip and the back stitches onto the cable, and work across the front set of stitches.
Continue on in this manner, rotating your work and arranging your stitches after you have worked each side.
Make sure that you are knitting around the outside of the tube you are creating. The right (knit) side should be to the outside and the wrong (purl) side to the inside. To correct this, just turn your work right-side out and begin working around the outside of the tube.
14When your project has reached the desired length, bind off your work.
Sometimes when using this method, you accidentally knit the front set of stitches using the back needle instead of the front needle. You will know this has happened when you knit to the end of the front set of stitches and an empty needle suddenly falls in your lap. Your work may appear to be a twisted mess, but it is easily remedied. Just slip half of the stitches back onto the empty circular and you are ready to go.