Newbie needs to know how to do a yarn over

I’m a very new knitter trying to make a baby blanket. The directions say it’s an easy knit baby blanket, but I’m stuck. I think I know what a yarn over is, but the directions ask me to work through the back to twist the stitch so the holes are smaller. How do I do this? I’m totally confused and would love to have this blanket done by next month. I bought a $20.00 DVD, but wouldn’t you know it didn’t even have how to do a yarn over on it! HELP!!


There is a video of that right toward the very bottomHERE


Thanks for the tip, but I tried getting the video to work on my computer. It’s so slow that it wouldn’t bring it up. We live out in the sticks, and our computer service isn’t that fast. Videos rarely work, only on good days. I need to have someone that is good at giving directions explain it in writing. Thanks, Meredith

Could you type in the directions exactly as they are written in the pattern? Knitting has its own language, and the wording is pretty specific. I bet with the exact phrasing, we could figure it out. :thinking:

Thanks for your help. Here are the exact directions: R3: K4 (K2tog) 3 times, (YO, K1) 5times, YO, (K2tog) 6 times, repeat to last 15 sts, end (YO,K1), 5 times, YO, (K2tog) 3 times, K4.

It says, NOTE: When working ro w 3, the YO’s are worked through the back to twist the stich. This makes the holes make by the YO’s smaller, so they are not as likely to catch on small fingers and toes.

I make take a knitting class on Saturday morning to figure this out. I’ve never done a YO, and the I have difficulty looking at pictures in the books I have and knowing if I’m doing it correctily. I think I can figure out the YO, but backwards with a twist throws me through a loop.


Hi Meredith,

There are plenty of people here that can explain how to do this much better than I can so I’ll leave the actual yarn over thing to them. But where the videos are concerned: you could try to download them first onto your own computer and play them from there.
That way it doesn’t really matter how crappy or how well your internet connection is for it to play properly, just how fast your own computer is.

hope you’ll figure it out and can continue with your blanket!


When you do a yo, you bring the yarn over to the front as if to purl, then k your next stitches. In this instance, I think they might want you to knit into the back loop of the next stitch after you YO. I just tried it and it does make a smaller hole.

Hi Meredith

I think what it means is how you work the yarn over on the following row. Normally you would knit into the front of the yarn over loop to make the stitch and leave a hole. If you knit into the back of the yarn over loop then it twists the stitch and closes up the hole quite a bit.

Hope that helps


That’s what I thought when I first saw this, but it gives special note for Row 3 and Row 3 is where the yo’s are put in the first place. Wouldn’t she purl the yo’s on the next row?

Hi Ingrid

You could be right - I was imagining a garter stitch blanket…

It works just as well to purl into the back of the YO loop on the next row, in that you get tiny holes, but I can’t help feeling they’re so tiny that it’s not worth the bother.

Meredith, any chance of scanning in a picture so we may be able to see what the end result should look like?


Lots of great advice,

I’ll try some of your suggestions and see if it works. From your descriptions, I think I’m doing the normal YO correctly. Next time I’ll try knitting it through the back. I wish I could scan the results, but we don’t have a scanner. As for the video, when I try to download any videos off of the internet it locks my computer up. I was going to take a knitting class tomorrow, but the shop isn’t giving lessons tomorrow. I’ll go in to another store and show someone what I’m doing and try to get some free advice. If this blanket gets made in time and looks the way it should, I’ll be sure to tell you. Thanks for all your advice. I’m going on a 14 hour plane ride and the plan was to make the blanket on the way to kill time. Time flies when you’re knitting. Thanks again for your advice, and perhaps I can scan a picture of the blanket once I get back to work in August.


I think the bottom line in this whole thing is to get the holes smaller. Anyway that is attempted, whether through the back of the knit or the back of the yo will accomplish that. I say just pick one and stick with it, this way you can just knit and not have to go chasing all over town for a lesson.