The purl stitch is the second of the two fundamental stitches in knitting, the first being the knit stitch (you can check out my post and video on learning the knit stitch here). This is the third step in learning how to knit.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, knitting and purling are the basics to knitting. If you can knit and purl, there is an endless supply of stitch patterns right at your fingertips! One of the easiest is called the stockinette stitch which I'll cover in a later post.

Let's start purling! (tip: you can watch all my videos in HD)

Keywords in this post:
  • purl stitch - a bumpy horizontal loop with a semicircle shape, also known as purling and abbreviated as "p"
  • short end - yarn end that does not lead to a ball of yarn, also known as a tail
  • ball end - yarn end that leads directly to your ball of yarn, also known as a working end

How to Purl

To recap, when purling:
  • keep working / ball end of yarn at front of work
  • insert your needle into the front of the stitch from right to left
  • wrap your yarn over and under your needle and pull through

You'll notice your purl stitch looks an awful lot like the back side of your knit stitch. That's because it is! Purling is knitting's opposite.

Our YouTube channel has more videos coming soon...I see learning how to cast off in your future! Follow us on twitter @tinselmint and tweet us or leave a comment below telling us what you'd like to learn how to knit!


  1. Michelle, a very clear video and instructions, Keep up the good work

  2. Thank you so much for this!!! I've been wanting to learn how to knit for a VERY long time and once I found your awesome videos I knew I had to start. Very nicely organized, good audio, visuals, and very aesthetic :) I wish there were more bloggers like you!

  3. Your videos are amazing. I've been struggling with the purl stitch for as long as I can remember and had given up on knitting all together but your tutorial has taught me how to purl! Thank you! You've opened a whole new door for me in the crafting world!

    1. Kristen I'm sooo happy to hear that! I'm sitting here wondering what to do with my blog/videos etc and this made me remember why I started this project in the first place. You've made my day! So excited for you and the new adventures you'll have in knitting!