18 August 2014

Book of Kells - Large Celtic Cables

The Book of Kells is full of inspiring Celtic knots. I couldn't resist translating a few more into 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.

These modules are made with Vanna's Choice yarn 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: 5" x 5"
   Bottom left corner: 3.5" x 6.5"
   Bottom right corner: 3.5" x 6.5"

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.

Click on any of the charts below to download a high resolution stitch diagram.

Each module pattern gives the number of stitches across and rows tall for the pattern.
As diagramed, the first 4 rows are sc across. At the end of each row, chain 1 to turn.

The first relief stitches begin on Row 5:

Horizontal and Vertical modules (corresponding to Figs. 2 and 3):

Corner modules (corresponding to Figs. 4 and 5):

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.

Detail of connection between modules (corresponding to Figs. 7 and 8):



I hope you enjoyed this free crochet pattern!

Fig. 1:   Book of Kells inspiration for these patterns.

Fig. 2:   Short Horizontal column

Fig. 3:   Short Vertical column

Fig. 4:   Top Left corner

Fig. 5:   Bottom Left corner

Fig. 6:   Vertical column with corners

Fig. 7:   Transition between horizontal modules

Fig. 8:   Transition between vertical modules


  1. I saw this on Ravelry this morning in the top 20. Congratulations! I'm primarily a knitter but I also crochet and I think this is just stunning. I'm also a lover of the Book of Kells. Thank you so much for generously sharing this. I'm envisioning it as a border on a stockinette jacket.
    Patricia Brunner

  2. I have knitted Celtic knot designs, but was not sure how to go about putting it into crochet. Carry on, I would love more.

  3. Oh, thank you so much for these beautiful Book of Kells patterns! They are absolutely perfect for an afghan I am making called "A Study in Texture". I will likely use this border as a finishing touch.

  4. I love crocheting cables but had not quite figured out how to 'turn the corner' with cabled border. Thank you so very much for puzzling it out AND for sharing! You are incredibly generous! <3

  5. I am hopelessly stuck on one point in this pattern... Hoping for some help! In the horizontal module on row 7 there comes a point where one stitch is supposed to go horizontally two stitches to the right and also down to the "X" cross below. Every time I attempt this it end up a big matted mess of yarn. Any wisdom you might be able to impart on how this is supposed to be done would be greatly appreciated :). I love this pattern and I would hate to have to give up just because of this one type of stitch. Thanks!!!

    1. Hi Krista. I have started to put together a photo tutorial for the small celtic cables. Here is a step that is very similar to the horizontal row that you are on. Does this help?

  6. I am blown away by what you have done! I can't wait to try these out! Thank you so much!

  7. I am making an oversized queen size bedspread out of #10 Crochet thread and need to make 528 squares for the basic spread. I am using the Matelasse Afghan pattern for the squares and joining the squares using a modified flat braid method. Your Celtic Cable will make the perfect edging for this project and I can not thank you enough for sharing your pattern. I only have a few hours a day to devote to my Crochet and believe that I will be ready to complete the edging in about eight months. Not wanting to wait that long I have just today started to apply the edging to the width of the spread and once I have it completed, I would very much like to send a picture to you but have no idea how to do so. If you would like this picture can you provide an email address where I can send it? I see at the top!of this article you indicate that one can email but I fail to find the address. I just turned 67 yesterday and it is probably my age showing.

  8. I notice several typo's above. Kindly overlook them.

  9. I can't wait to get started on these beautiful celtic patterns,ooh what to make first.

  10. This is absolutely brilliant!! You are gifted beyond words. (I hesitate to look at your other creations for "fear" that I'll be absorbed for hours and hours.) Thanks for sharing your generous talents.

  11. I am having a little trouble with the bottom right corner. How do you get the horizontal connect at the end of row 7. I finally left it out and will end up embroidering it in. but any explanation would be greatly appreciated.

  12. I am excited to give it a try, I hope that your book also will come out in Belgium x

  13. I have been working on a blanket by joining several celtic inspired cable patterns. This is the perfect border for it!

  14. Hello! I think this would make a really amazing border for a project I'm about to start. I'm curious though how you might recommend doing that: should it be done as a continuous piece or done in the modules and pieces together? And if it's the former, which section would you suggest to start with?

  15. Hi, these are beautiful and I would love to use these for a blanket for my bed but I struggle to read from the diagrams. Is this pattern written out long hand anywhere? Thank you xxx

  16. Love your work Suvi, what software do you use to draw out your diagrams with?

  17. I am impossible with diagrams. Is this pattern available in written form? I have been looking for the right border for a celtic themed blanket I am finishing up and this would be perfect!