Moby Dick Cable Controller


I am always losing earphones, leaving them on trains, buses, any coat pocket but the one I’m wearing, so Moby Dick is an effort in the direction of no more new ones. A few days ago someone published a fabulous little crochet version, but since I cannot crochet, needs must and I will knit.

The possibility for punning is huge, mobis and dicks being what they are but today I’ll resist and merely post a few of the vague directions that will probably be enough for you to create this little monster of the deep for yourself.

You will need:

Some leftover scraps of Noro Silk Garden Light or other DK or 4ply yarn.
A 4mm long-ish circular needle or your favourite DPNs
Two buttons from your spare buttons tin.

The Moby Dick is knit double stranded, and tightly so that the fabric created is dense, almost felt-like. You can try felting to see what happens, but be warned that the result will be quite a bit smaller.

Okay, here she blows:

Using your circular needle Magic Loop style and your favourite cast-on method, cast on and knit 6 sts. Join in the round, placing a marker at the beginning of the round.

Round 2: K1, Kfb, K1, Kfb, K1, Kfb.
Round 3 and all odd numbered round: Knit all
Round 4: K1, Kfb, repeat to end.

Repeat for 8 rows, or until you think it’s big enough. This one measures 5cm across the underbelly.

Last 3 rounds, Knit all stitches. This creates the bowl shape for the sides. If you have been rather clever, your underbelly will be a pale greenish blue, several shades lighter than your main colour.

Cast off around the underbelly using a your favourite cast-off method, leaving 6 stitches live for the tail.

The Tail

Knit 4 rows of garter stitch across the 6 stitches.

Divide tail by joining new yarn on the 4th stitch and knit two rows, knitting half the tail with one strand of yarn and half with the other. This is an awful lot easier than it sounds, trust me.

Knit 2 rows on each side of the divided tail.

Increase by one stitch at the beginning and end of the next row = one more stitch on each side of the tail. You will have eight stitches on your needle, four from each strand of yarn. Cast off, making sure you’re casting off each half of the flipping tail with its own strand of yarn. Doh.

Whale Body

Cast on and knit 6 stitches as before.

Round 2: K1, Kfb, K1, Kfb, K1, Kfb.
Round 3 and all odd numbered round: Knit all
Round 4: K2, Kfb, repeat to end.
Round 6: as Round 4

Keep going with R3 and  R4s until the width of your Whale’s body is the same width as the underbelly, and then knit a few rows without increasing. Three is about right, but for a deeper Whale, do four or even five.

Cast off.

Join body to underbelly using a flat mattress stitch. Sew neatly but firmly, leaving an appropriately greedy gaping maw to gobble up your USB cable, or your not-lost earphones.

Attach two buttons, one at either side of that monster mouth, and use Ysolda Teague’s instructions for making button loops and you’re done!

A big warm hello and thank you to the very clever and enterprising Brigitte Read. If you can crochet, make hers! Maybe now’s the time to learn.

“We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men; and among those fibers, as sympathetic threads, our actions run as causes, and they come back to us as effects.”

Herman Melville, Moby Dick.

This pattern is free for you to use on this website and you can print a single copy for your own personal use. If you would like to make a donation to support the website and our costs, the suggested donation for this pattern is £1.

Thank you!


12 thoughts on “Moby Dick Cable Controller

  1. Hi, I’m getting ready to cast on but I’m missing one thing: the button loops pattern. The link to the button loops is linking to a page not found. Any idea where I can find it? Thanks, Katya

  2. Hi,
    I’m almost ready to cast on. I’m just missing one piece: the button loops pattern. The link is pointing to a page not found on Ysolda’s website. Any idea where I can find how to make the loops?


    • Hello! very sorry to hear this. Ysolda’s instructions are superb. She’s rewriting her website so I’m sure they’ll be back one day. In the meantime, you could make a simple crochet chain, attaching at each end. Or try this from Berocco: it’s the same as Ysolda’s method.

      Good luck!

  3. hi there
    I can’t knit in the round as a a new knitter, how do I work this as a flat project with seams, any advice?Thanks

    • You need double pointed sock needles to make this. It’d be a great practise project for doing say sleeves or mittens later. It’s really too small to seam.

      Good luck!

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