Quick question

I've seen some patterns that, in their glossary, state that sl1 means "slip 1 as if to knit." Others indicate in their glossary to "slip 1 as if to purl" when you see sl1.

My question is, is there a default for when a pattern doesn't indicate whether you are to slip 1 as if to knit or as if to purl? If it just says "sl1" and does not have a glossary, which way do you slip it?


MMario's picture

I've always heard the rule of thumb is; if the slipped stitch is being worked as part of a multiple step, slip as if to knit.

if it is being slipped and nothing else, slip as if to purl, with yarn in back.

MMario - I'm not divorced from reality - we're having a trial separation

OperaGeek's picture

I've heard it's always purl unless it's specified knit. Slipping purl-wise just moves the stitch to the other needle as it is, whereas slipping knit-wise twists the stitch as it is moved.

QueerJoe's picture

In general, the default is to slip as if to purl unless specified otherwise. Even in situations where you might have a multi-step stitch combination, there are times where you'd definitely want to slip as if to purl...e.g., SL1, K2Tog, PSSO.

SSK is the only mult-step stitch combination I know that slips as if to Knit without specifying such.

TheKnittingMill's picture

I'm with you Joe--why do I feel like I'm becoming your groupie? (",)

YugiDean's picture

Thank you. This is helpful.

"Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as they can from a lack of bread." --Richard Wright


Empiric approach: I don't know the correct answer to your question, but my approach would be to look at a photo, drawing or example of the finished result I want, and try both approaches. I'd use the approach that gave me the result I want.

Purls come in two flavors, resulting in two opposite ways that the yarn sits on the needle. One might have to compensate for the way one purls by slipping like a knit (from in front) or slipping like a purl (from in back). For example, recently one MWK member shared a photo of a beautiful sweater he made, where all the stitches on every other row were twisted. I don't know whether this was done intentionally, or whether he wanted a plain stockinette fabric but was purling in such a way that when he knit, the stitches were automatically twisted.