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yarn over

The first increase most knitters learn (often by mistake) is the yarn over (yo). This simple technique creates a new stitch between two existing stitches.

To make a yarn over, bring the yarn up across the front of the needle, over the top and down the back. If the next stitch is a knit, you are in position and good to go.  If the next stitch is a purl, bring the yarn forward under the needle into position to purl.

yarn over

Yarn over before a knit stitch.

yarn over

Yarn over before a purl stitch.

Yarn overs are easy to work and won’t disturb the stitches on either side of the new stitch, but they also create a hole in the fabric.  Some knitters view this as an effective decorative detail.

Increase How Tos:

yarn over knit in front and back of the stitch Make One Increase
Lifted Increase Eyelets Twisted yarn overs

Read the full article, Increasing your Options.

Sandi Rosner is a knitter who wears many hats: designer, technical editor, writer and teacher. She loves the little details that elevate a knitting project from homemade to handmade. Follow Sandi’s blog at