Knit thru back loop vs front loop?

When I learned how to knit, I learned that a knit stitch was done through the back loop, and the purl stitch through the front one. In stockinette/ribbing on the flat, this is the easiest way to do it.

However, when I began knitting on the round, it was hard to do ribbing like this. So I did some research and found out that you could knit through the front loop and purl through the back loop. Thus, in the round (when ribbing), I do knit sts on the front and purl sts on the back.

Is there any difference on the result of your knitting when you knit through the front or back loop?

I am right now knitting a pair of fingerless mittens for myself. There is ribbing and I have to knit in back loop and purl in back look. Looks the same to me as regular knit in front and purl in front. So I will be curious to see what answer you get here. I find it much easier to knit the regular way especially in the purl in the back loop!! It sure slows me down and I knit continental and usually knit FAST.

Well, yes, you can end up twisting the stitches.

As a generality, you always knit thru the portion of the stitch that leans toward the right needle. Depending on the style of knitting you use, that could be the back or the front.

You are knitting Combined style. I do as well, and I’m very happy. If you notice, when you do a knit stitch, we do not “twist” our stitches, so they hang over the needle pretty evenly. However, you will notice that the “leading edge” or where you start inserting your needle into the loop is in the back.

So when you do your western purling method, you’re not really straightening out the stitch as you do in Continental or western knitting. As a result, we have to do a bit of a different step when we do some increases and decreases. You can find a handy dandy conversion chart here. Also, Annie Modesitt’s site is my go to for information when I am knitting combined.

The one thing I have noticed in Combined knitting, and it’s always rubbed me the wrong way, is that when you are doing back and forth knitting in stockinette stitch, it can be very ugly if you are not throwing your yarn on the correct way on the purl stitches. Even if you manage to get it to look right, the purl rows appear to be smaller than the rows you knit. It’s extremely frustrating. I found that by purling through the back loop (eastern purling) I was able to make my stockinette stitch look even. I do a lot of socks, so the heel flap is really a source of pride for me.

When you are knitting in the round, and I’ve done a gazillion caps this winter, I didn’t have any problem with my ribbing purl stitches and keep doing them in the western fashion, because they are pulled into the background and the knitting stitches pull forward for the ribbing, it all looks fantastic.

You should go to my Ravelry Projects and check out some beanies I’ve done with a very noticeable K2P2 ribbing. Keep me posted on your project. It’s nice to see another active Combination Knitter among us :slight_smile:

I didn’t know how I knit had a name XD

It’s so much easier knitting like this. But… There is a [I]conversion table[/I]? What a drag. I’ll now pay more attention to my knitting when doing decreases and increases. Thanks a lot AngelaR!

When I learned how to knit, I learned that a knit stitch was done through the back loop, and the purl stitch through the front one.

Your sts should all be wrapped the same direction so that whether you knit or purl in them, they would be worked throught the front loop. This probably worked for you because you wrapped the purl sts backwards and on the next row, knitting them through the back loop kept them untwisted. When working in the round, you didn’t purl at all so knitting into the back of a knit st made them twisted.

The conversion ‘table’ is really just a demonstration of how to knit combined.

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If you don’t want twisted stitches make sure you’re wrapping the purl the “wrong” way by going under instead of over in stockinette.

I intentionally wrap my purls “wrong” creating twisted stitches when I do ribbing in the round. It creates beautiful tight ribbing. You can only tell when you look at the back of the work that one stitch is twisted.