One Remarkable Way to Knit in the Round: Use 2 Circular Needles

Want to know more about knitting on two circular needles? Check out these handy tutorials!

Do you want to learn to knit in the round, but worry you’ll poke your eye out with all those points sticking out from double-pointed needles (DPNs)?

Using DPNs was my own introduction to circular knitting. Sure, it was fiddly at first, but I eventually got the hang of it. However, I can’t say I ever learned to love it.

When I first learned about knitting with 2 circular needles, I was intrigued. Perhaps you are, too?

Using two circular needles is a fantastic way to knit small-diameter items like socks, slippers, mittens, and fingerless mitts and gloves. Even better is that you can use this method to knit two at once. Never again suffer from Second Sock (or Mitten) Syndrome!

Why 2 Circular Needles can be easier than DPNs

The advantages of knitting with two circular needles over 4 or 5 DPNs are many. To wit:

1. No more lost or dropped needles! Those handy circular cables keep everything together.

2. No more “porcupine” effect — the needles don’t jut out threateningly, but hang limply to the side, so they are far less dangerous.

3. “Ladders” — those awful gaps that often develop between stitches on two separate DPNs — can become things of the past.

4. Much easier to try on mittens or socks while you’re knitting.

5. Did I mention you can knit two at a time?

So if you’ve suffered these problems in knitting with DPNs, you may want to consider using two circular needles instead.

Two Circulars Tip

One quick tip I want to mention before I launch into several fantastic two-circulars tutorials.

You will probably want to use two easily distinguishable sets of circular needles. You’ll want them to be the same size, of course, but it’s best to make sure they are different in some way. You could use two different lengths, two different colors, or two different materials.

If your only choice is to use two identical sets of circular needles, however, all is not lost. Simply mark one set in some way.

You can mark it with a permanent marker, or you can use a pin stitch marker to mark one set of stitches. Just be sure you can distinguish one set from the other. As you look through the tutorials and begin knitting, you’ll understand why this is essential!

Now then, let’s get to the tutorials!

Illustrated Tutorials 

Sock Along with Joyce Williams: This sock knit-along written by likely two-circular inventor Joyce Williams will teach you how to knit a pair of socks on two circulars.

There are two variations, one at a time and two at a time. If you’ve never knitted a sock before, you’ll probably want to go with one at a time. If you’ve tried socks before, you should be fine to dive into two at a time.

Knit Picks: If you don’t necessarily want to dive right into a full pattern, but just want to get a feel for how the process is done, try this handy illustrated tutorial from Knit Picks.

For Dummies: This illustrated tutorial is similar to Knit Picks’; it’s a matter of taste as to which you prefer and which will make the concept clearer.

Weeblesknit: Another outstanding illustrated guide. I love this one because it offers very helpful tips and tricks, as well as some troubleshooting techniques. (For instance: Uh-oh, I’ve just realized I’m knitting inside out, what do I do?)

Curious about Magic Loop knitting? Check out the next post here!

Video Tutorials

Each of these tutorials is outstanding. Watch them all for the best feel of which tutorial will work the best for you.

Tara Miller

Knitting with Nancy Wynn

Two Ways to Work in the Round with Two Circular Needles with 10 Rows a Day

Berroco KnitBits

I hope these tutorials help you get a feel for knitting with two circular needles!

Two circular needles
Get “How to Get Your Handknits to Local People in Need: What You Need to Know” FREE with your subscription to the Knitting Nuggets Newsletter. When you join this community, you’ll receive resources + inspiration to knit patterns you love for people you care about!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. I made the mistake of mixing up my different colored needles and beginning to knit!!! How do I fix it? Can it be fixed??

    Thanks so much!
    Merle McDonald