Book of Kells - Large Celtic Cables

Updated: Jan 25, 2019

Difficulty: Advanced ✦✦✦✦✦


The Book of Kells is full of inspiring Celtic knots. I couldn't resist translating a few more into free crochet patterns. Here are some large columns or cables that would make a wonderful edging to a blanket.

The pieces are designed to be modular so you can choose how many horizontal and vertical segments to add to make the edging your own.


Update 3 March 2018:

If you are having trouble with this pattern, I highly recommend looking at my Celtic Heart Square. It is a much simpler celtic knot and the pattern includes not only a chart, but also written instructions and a video showing how to stitch the complex relief stitches.


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These modules are made with worsted weight yarn (Vanna's Choice) and a 5 mm (H) hook.

Their measurements are (height x width):


Short Horizontal: 3" x 6" Long Horizontal: 3" x 8.5" Short Vertical: 4" x 4" Tall Vertical: 6" x 4" Top left corner: 5" x 5" Top right corner: 3.5" x 6.5" Bottom left corner: 5" x 5" Bottom right corner: 3.5" x 6.5"


The illustration from the Book of Kells where these Celtic knots are borrowed from.



These patterns consist of relief double, treble, and double-treble crochet stitches. These are made just like normal dc, tc, and dtc stitches, but are looped around the designated stitch in a row below rather than through the top of the stitch directly below. In most cases, the relief stitch is made 2 rows down and several stitches to the right or the left of the starting position. The pattern alternates rows of grey and blue single crochet (represented by a X). Each blue row is stitched on the "right side" (RS) of the project. Each grey row is stitched on the "wrong side" (WS) of the project. The relief stitches are made in the blue rows on the RS. Always stitch a sc for any X in the pattern, even if there is a relief stitch on top of it. Relief stitches are always made from in order right to left side of the diagram row. When looking at the diagram, the top of each stitch looks like a T. There is never a blue X beneath a T because this is the beginning of a relief stitch rather than a single crochet place holder. The number of hash marks through the stitch indicate the number of yarn overs (YOs) to make before looping around a stitch.

The open circle indicates where to loop around a stitch in a row below to create the relief stitch.


For a more detailed explanation, please refer to the instructions in this Book of Kells square pattern.


Horizontal modules:


Vertical modules:



Corner modules:


Each module above shows "connector" relief stitches that are not counted in the stitch counts. These connectors will overlap when piecing modules together. Only add one stitch or one row between modules to total stitch counts. Horizontal Connection:


Vertical Connection:



Troubleshooting Tips:


- Don't forget the hidden blue Xs (single crochet) behind the horizontal rows.

- In these patterns, it is important to pay attention to where the top of the T is for each stitch.


In this diagram, stitch two front post double crochet (1, 2), one sc (3), YO and pull a loop around the second dc then pull a loop through 2 loop on the hook (4a), YO three times and pull a loop up around the fpdtc down 2 rows and to the left 3 stitches then pull a loop through 2 loops on the hook until there are 3 loops left on the hook (4b), then pull a loop through all 3 loops to complete the stitch (4), YO and pull a loop around sc (3), YO and pull a loop around the first dc then pull a loop through 2 loop on the hook until there are 2 loops left (5a), YO three times and pull a loop up around the fpdtc down 2 rows and to the left 3 stitches then pull a loop through 2 loops on the hook until there are 3 loops left on the hook (5b), then pull a loop through all 3 loops to complete the stitch (5).

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Suvi's Crochet!

I'm Suvi, a crochet designer, biology teacher, and mother to an adorable little boy.  If I'm not stitching, you can find me in the garden or the kitchen.

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