TBL Knitting Abbreviation Explained

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The TBL Knitting Abbreviation is another great knitting term to add to your vocabulary. In fact, the TBL abbreviation stands for Through the Back Loop.

In Western knitting, you usually knit into the front loop which is the loop closest to you. However, sometimes a pattern calls for you to work through the back loop instead.

By knitting through the back loop, you are in effect twisting or turning the stitch. This will make the stitch tighter.

That means that if you are working a pattern with a lot of twisted stitches, you would want to double check your gauge. You can do this by knitting a gauge swatch in the pattern.

As a matter of fact, you will often see the TBL abbreviation used together with a number of other abbreviations.

KTBL is probably the most common one of these. This abbreviation means knit through the back loop and you will sometimes also see it abbreviated as K1 TBL.

When knitting through the back loop, your knit stich will look different. Instead of it looking like a ā€œvā€ as usual, it will look more like a ā€œyā€ instead.

Conversely, you will at times also see the abbreviation PTBL used. This abbreviation means purl through the back loop. Again, this might also be written as P1 TBL.  However, it is a less common abbreviation than KTBL.

Furthermore, you will often see the TBL knitting abbreviation used when decreasing. One such common decrease abbreviation is k2tog tbl.


As you can see, the TBL knitting abbreviation is a very useful term to know as it is used in combination with a number of other abbreviations.

If you are not sure how to correctly knit through the back loop, we have a great, step-by-step tutorial that you can find here: TFL and TBL: Knit Through Front and Back Loops.

This tutorial also shows you different ways of using the TBL.

One Comment

  1. Thank you. Never new this. We learn new things every day.

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