Pattern Abbreviations

Knitting and crochet patterns use abbreviations to condense their directions and make the patterns faster to read and easier to produce. But reading a pattern can be like reading a foreign language, sometimes! To help you decipher, here are some of the most commonly used abbreviations that you might find in our patterns.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | OP | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

A

B

bo - bind off

C

cc - contrast color

cdd - centered double decrease. Three stitches become one. To do this, slip two stitches together from left needle to right needle as if to knit. Knit one stitch from left needle. Pass two slipped stitches back over knit stitch and off right needle. Two stitches decreased.

cn - cable needle

co - cast on. Every project starts with a cast on. Check out our Resources page for cast on options.

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

k - knit

k2tog - knit 2 stitches together. One stitch decreased.

k2tog tbl – knit two together through back of loops. To do this, put right needle through back of loops of both stitches at once and knit together. One stitch decreased.

k3tog - knit 3 stitches together. Two stitches decreased.

kfb - knit into the front and back of the same stitch. One stitch increased.

kfbf – knit into front, back, front of same stitch. Two stitches increased.

k1 tbl - knit one stitch through back of loop

L

ldd - left double decrease. Three stitches become one. To do this, slip one stitch knit-wise from left needle to right needle, knit two stitches together, pass slipped stitch over this stitch and off right needle. Two stitches decreased.

ln - left needle

ltk - left twist, knit background. To do this, place next stitch on cable needle and hold to front. Knit following stitch, then knit stitch from cable needle.

ltp - left twist, purled background. To do this, place next stitch on cable needle and hold to front. Purl following stitch, then knit stitch from cable needle.

M

m - marker

m1l - make one, left leaning. To do this, bring tip of left needle under strand between stitches, from front to back. Knit through back of loop to twist it. One stitch increased.

m1r - make one, right leaning. To do this, bring tip of left needle under strand between stitches, from back to front. Knit through the front of this loop to twist it. One stitch increased. 

mc - main color

mm - move marker. To do this, slip one stitch, remove marker, slip stitch back to left needle, replace marker.

N

ndl(s) - needle(s)

O

P

p - purl

p2tog - purl 2 stitches together. One stitch decreased.

p2tog tbl – purl two stitches together as one through back of loops. One stitch decreased.

pfb - purl into front and back of stitch. One stitch increased.

pm - place marker

psso – pass slipped stitch(es) over

Q

R

rem - remain(ing)

rep - repeat

rn - right needle

rnd(s) - round(s). Used when knitting in the round. 

rm - remove marker

rs - right side. The side of the project that will be showing when worn or used.

rtk - right twist, knit background. To do this, place next stitch on cable needle and hold to back. Knit following stitch, then knit stitch from cable needle.

rtp - right twist, purled background. To do this, place next stitch on cable needle and hold to back. Knit following stitch, then purl stitch from cable needle.

S

skp - slip/knit/pass. To do this, slip one stitch knitwise from left needle to right needle, knit one stitch, then pass slipped stitch over knitted stitch and off right needle. One stitch decreased. The same result as [ssk] below.

sl - slip. To do this, pass the next stitch from left needle to right needle without working. Unless otherwise specified, slip as if to purl.

sm - slip marker

ssk - slip/slip/knit. To do this, slip one stitch as if to knit, slip another stitch as if to knit, insert left needle into front of both these stitches and knit them together. One stitch decreased. Note: some people prefer an ssk worked with the second stitch slipped as if to purl. The same result as [skp] above.

sssk – slip/slip/slip/knit. To do this, slip three stitches individually as if to knit. Insert left needle into front of all three stitches and knit them together. Two stitches decreased.

st(s) - stitch(es)

T

tbl - through the back loop

U

V

W

w&t - wrap and turn. Bring yarn to front. Slip next stitch from left needle to right needle. Return yarn to back of work. Slip last stitch on right needle back to left needle. Turn work. You’re now ready to work the next row.

ws - wrong side. The side of the project that will not show when worn or used.

wyib – with yarn in back

wyif – with yarn in front

X

Y

yo - yarn over. To do this, wrap yarn around right needle. One stitch increased. Often used in conjunction with a decrease in lace patterns.

For a yo between two knit stitches, start with yarn in back of work, bring yarn between needles to front of work, then over top of right needle to back of work.

For yo between two purl stitches, start with yarn in front of work, bring yarn over the top of the right needle to back of work, then between needles to front of work.

For yo after a knit stitch and before a purl stitch, start with yarn in back of work, bring yarn between needles to front of work, then over top of right needle to back of work, then between needles to front of work.

For yo after a purl stitch and before a knit stitch, start with yarn in front of work, bring yarn over the top of right needle to back of work. We know this seems short... but it’s true.

Z