How to Purl Stitches

It's time to learn how to purl stitches and it's really simple to do. If you've been practicing the knit stitch for awhile then you're ready for purling too. Besides these two stitches go together like bread and butter.

The best part is, once you know how to purl and knit you can make practically anything. And the stitch patterns you can create are endless and so pretty.

Think of purl stitching as the opposite to the knit stitch. You still hold your knitting needles the same way however you will hold the yarn in front of your knitting needle as you purl the stitches. 

Knitting purl stitches is very easy to do. It will feel a little awkward to work at first but you'll get used to it after a little practice. Purl stitches tend to get looser so just give them a little tug when you are finished working the stitch or hold your yarn a little tighter.

Not too tight though.

I always tighten up the yarn around my fingers when I'm purling.  

Here's How to Purl Stitches

Before you even begin to knit the purl stitch make sure you place the working yarn in front of your work.

how to purl

Insert the right needle down into the first loop on the left needle starting from the top and then move it up a little bit to catch that first loop.

how to purl

Then take the working yarn and wrap it around right needle counterclockwise. Snug it up a bit. Notice that with the purl stitch the right knitting needle is in front of left needle.

With the knit stitch the right needle is behind the left needle.

how to purl
how to purl

Now, with right needle and yarn still wrapped around it, slowly slide it down back through that first loop on left needle.

Drop this first loop on your left needle. That stitch was just worked (the new stitch is on the right needle)so slide it off the needle.

how to pur

Just keep sliding the loop on the left needle off as it has been worked.

how to purl

The new purl stitch now sits on the right needle.

To help you along, I have chosen two excellent purl knitting videos, using the English style and Continental style.

How to Purl - English Style

How to Purl - Continental Style

All done. You can now purl stitches.

Way to go you ROCK!

Would you like to keep practicing?  That's great!  Here's a little knitting pattern to practice with.

Easy Practice Pattern For Purling Stitches

Cast on 35 stitches

Knit 5 rows of Garter stitch. (Knit every row)

Row 6:  Knit 5, Purl 25, Knit 5

Row 7: Knit all stitches

Row 8:  Repeat row 6

Row 9:  Repeat row 7

Continue knitting row 6 and 7 until you have a square or as long as you like it to be.

Finish by knitting 5 rows of garter stitch

Bind off loosely and weave in ends.

This little purling knitting pattern can also be your first practice dishcloth. 

Knitting instructions


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