Easy instructions for cables - i found this on a great site Knitting cables for dummies
The simple technique of cabling (crossing one group of stitches over another) lends itself to many interpretations in knitting. It's easy to do, you can make all kinds of interesting and imaginative cable patterns. All it takes is a little patience and practice.
You can make any kind of cable by suspending (holding) a number of stitches on a cable needle (cn) while you knit that same number of stitches from the LH needle. Then you knit the suspended stitches either by returning them to the LH needle and knitting them or by knitting them straight from the cable needle. This process of knitting stitches out of order enables you to cross stitches, creating cables. Whether you're making simple or intricate cables, all you're doing is crossing stitches. Easy, right?
Standard or rope cables are the most basic cables. They generally cross stitches predictably up a single column of stitches. You can make a rope cable over almost any even number of stitches from two to twelve — or more.
If you want to make a cable that looks like it's twisting to the left, you hold your suspended stitches in front of your work while you knit from the LH needle.
If you want to make a cable that twists to the right, hold the suspended stitches in back.
To try a 6-stitch left-twisting cable, cast on 14 stitches and then follow these steps:
1. Work Row 1 (RS): P4, k6, p4.
The first and last k4 (knit four) stitches make up the background fabric for your cable. The six stitches in the middle are where you'll form your cable stitches.
2. Work Row 2: K4, p6, k4.
3. Work Row 3: P4, k6, p4. (same as row 1).
4. Work Row 4: k4, p6, k4 (same as row 2).
5. Work Row 5, the turning row: P4, sl 3 sts to cn and hold in front (see Figure 1a), k3 from LH needle (see Figure 1b), k3 from cn (see Figure 1c), p4.
6. Work Row 6: K4, p6, k4 (same as Row 2).
Instead of knitting stitches directly from the cable needle, you may prefer to return the suspended stitches to the LH needle before you knit them. Try both ways and use whichever technique is more comfortable to you.
When you suspend stitches on the cable needle, let the cable needle dangle down in front of your work, giving the yarn a slight tug to keep it taut (you don't need to close the gap).
7. Repeat Steps 1 through 6 and watch your stockinette stitches become a cabled rope.
When you work cables, you go back and forth from purl stitches to knit stitches. From a knit to a purl stitch, bring your yarn between the needles to the front before you make the next stitch. From a purl to a knit stitch, bring your yarn between the needles to the back before you make the next stitch.