Knitting Instructions, Techniques & Tips | Knitting Supplies

Learn about Knitting on Two Circular Needles with Tutorials

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

Circular knitting on two circular needles is said to have been popularized by Joyce Williams, in the Summer 2000 edition of Knitter’s Magazine, and by Cat Bordhi’s book Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles, published in 2001.

Two circular needle knitting 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!

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?

For small-diameter circular knitting, two circular needles are a terrific choice. So if you’ve suffered the problems I’ve described 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. Of course you’ll want them to be the same size, but you need to make sure they are different in some way. You could use two different lengths, two different colors, or two different materials.

If you have no choice but 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!

Now then, let’s get to the tutorials! The first batch contains illustrated text; the second offers videos.

Illustrated Tutorials 

Sock Along with Joyce Williams: This sock knit-along written by 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.

Knitpicks: 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 Knitpicks.

For Dummies: This illustrated tutorial is similar to Knitpicks’; 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?)

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


Berroco KnitBits

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

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