Shorthand - What the crap do these letters mean?!

Lately I’ve been looking at a lot of knitting websites, and I’m finding I’m left in the dark about somethings. Anyone wanna help me define some of this shorthand/terms?

FO (I think this refers to finished projects… but no clue what the ‘o’ stands for)

OTN (I think it stands for ‘on the needle’)


More to come when I come across them. Thanks!

FO Finished (Off the needle)
OTN On the needle
frogging=rip it, rip it, rip it. (Also referred to as TINK backwards for KNIT)

You did a good job of figuring them out. We have a list of used abbreviations on this page:

Look at the third (or so) thread titled common abbreviations on this forum

Best wishes and welcome.

FO= Finished Object (as opposed to a UFO=Unfinished Object, taken from the term Unidentified Flying Object)

Just an aside–but I always have to watch what forum I am on because I also make handmade soap and on the soap forums FO=Fragrance Oil


There is a sticky thread (one that stays there all the time) near the top of the page in the “General Knitting” folder that has explanations for many of the commonly used abbreviations you will find here. You’ll find that helpful.

Frogging means ripping out your knitting. This comes from the similarity to what a frog says, “ribb-it, ribb-it” and what we say, “rip-it, rip-it”. LOL We also say it is “taking a trip to the frog pond.” Yeah, we’re crazy. :slight_smile:

Would you agree that frogging is more ripping many stitches, rows, or even a whole project, and that tinking is usually UN-knitting back to a mistake right after you’ve caught it?

I just like to see how others define these terms.


Clarkeee, I agree with your definitions of tinking and frogging, but you can tink back rows if you want, but it is as you said, unknitting them one stitch at a time.

Tonight, I was knitting for a while and suddenly realized one of my stitches went MIA. After some intense investigation (read: cursing and frantically searching), I found it.

The entire time, as I was pulling back three rows of stitches, I kept thinking, “Rip it… rip it… rip it…” and it really hit me why it’s called frogging. I’ve definitely ‘tinked’ before too, and there is a difference.

And that difference is frogging is the one that brings on tears. Tinking does not.

New one:

WYIF (I can’t even begin to imagine what this means. found it in a pattern)

DPN (double pointed needles?)


You’re right about dpn.