How to knit the KLL increase (knit through left loop)

A step by step tutorial for the KLL knitting increase. By knitting through the left loop, you get a very invisible right-leaning increase.

A lot of increases are very visible. When you are knitting a lace shawl, then this is actually what you are looking for as those beautiful eyelets are created that way. But for stockinette stitch and similar patterns, make one right or yarnover is not what you want. By knitting through the left loop of the stitch two rows below, you get an increase that is almost invisible. Here’s how you do it.

ⓘ In knitting patterns, this stitch is usually abbreviated with “KLL”. This increase is sometimes also called LLI, left lifted increase. There is also a left-leaning counterpart called KRL or knit right loop.

A different angle of a sample swatch with KLL knitting increases
A swatch with KLL increases on the right side of the work

Knitting KLL step by step

Note: I am using a contrasting red yarn for instructional purposes only.

This knitting increase works best in a knit row with another knit row below.

Step 1: Knit a stitch as normal as preparation (note: this stitch is technically speaking NOT part of the KLL, so if your pattern says KLL it means you have to perform the steps starting from #2)

knitting a stitch in preparation for the kll incease

Step 2: Insert your left needle into the stitch two rows below the one you just knitted on your right needle from the back so you don’t twist it (the red one in the picture above).

lift the stitch 2 rows below on your left needle for the kll increase

Step 3: Now, pick up only the left leg of that stitch and lift it on your left needle. Don’t pick up the whole stitch.

Step 4: Knit this extra loop through the back loop.

Knit the stitch through the back loop for the KLL increase

Step 5: Continue knitting according to your pattern.

this is how the kll increase will look on your needle after you knit it

And there is your KLL increase.

Note: I do believe KLL is one of the most inconspicuous increases there is. It only looks super neat, however, if there are at least 3 rows in between each increase. If you want to increase in every knit row making one through the back loop (M1R) is probably the better choice.

a sample swatch with two kll increases - one in red with a contrasting yarn and one almost invisible

There is also a corresponding knit through the right loop, which would be left-leaning BUT it creates a visible little hole with most yarns. If you knit that one through the back loop, then there will be no hole, but the twist will be visible. That’s why I usually stick with KLL on both sides of a project.

A sample swatch with kll and krl knitting increases
The left side of this swatch was increased with KRL (twisted) and the right side with KLL

I hope you liked this little tutorial. Make sure to comment if you got any problems.

How to knit the KLL knitting increase

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