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How to: work purl stitch

Lesson • Essential Knitting Know-how • 04:54 • Beginner

Purl stitch is an essential in knitting and is often alternated with knit stitch – together, these two easy stitches are the bedrock of most knitting patterns, so practise your purl in rhythmical rows to start with.

Essential Knitting Know-how

Course Overview



Included with Let’s Knit Together membership



40m 41s







What you need

What you need

A pair of straight, single-pointed knitting needles; one or two balls of yarn, depending on the class

Course Description

You've bought your yarn and you've mastered casting on - what next? Learn the basics to knit, purl, change yarns and cast off, plus rib and moss stitches, all of which are covered in this helpful course. What will you discover?

Meet your instructors

  • How to: work purl stitch Knitting Video

    Julie Peasgood

    Julie is an actress and presenter just starting out on her knitting journey

  • How to: work purl stitch Knitting Video

    Neti Love

    Neti is your resident knitting expert who knows the ins and out of all things yarn

Practical Guides

  • You can identify purl stitches by the horizontal ‘bump’ or U-shaped stitch under the loop on the needle.

  • A purl stitch creates a ‘bump’ when it is made, and remember to hold your working yarn at the front of your knitting, and when you wrap the yarn around the needle, the yarn comes to the front of your work again, ready to purl the next stitch. You’ll also see rows of purl stitches alternated with rows of knit stitches to form a stocking stitch fabric, with the purl rows usually on the wrong side, or back, the back of the fabric. When the purl side of a stocking stitch fabric is on the right side, this is called reverse stocking stitch. Purl stitches can be worked between knit stitches on the same row to create textural patterns and stitches on the right side, such as ribs and cables, to name but a few.

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