tutorial – working a p3tog

Working a p3tog decrease - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

In a previous post, I already showed you how to work the right-leaning double decrease, in which 3 stitches are reduced to one: the one abbreviated with “k3tog”. This stands for “knit 3 stitches together”. It’s a very easy and very common way to reduce the number of stitches in your project and make it narrower. It’s also often used in lace knitting.

But what when your lace also requires decreases to be worked on the wrong side of the fabric? This is where the purled decrease p3tog comes in! This decrease is worked on the wrong side and looks just like a k3tog when the result is viewed on the right side of the fabric. It’s a pretty straight-forward decrease to work; purl 3 stitches together, to decrease the total number of stitches with 2. It is just like making a regular purl stitch, but you work through three stitches instead of one.

Below you can find how to work this decrease step by step, so get your materials and follow along!


Yarn: Paintbox Yarns Simply DK, a good value, good quality 100% acrylic yarn, here in the color 155 Vintage pink.

Knitting needles: This is a pair of straights that I picked up at the second-hand store when I started knitting, brand unknown.

Working a p3tog step by step

  1. Work your way across the row until you’ve reached the point where you want to make the decrease.

    In this case, I want to work the decrease over the 3 stitches in the middle of the swatch.Step 1

  2. Insert the needle

    Now insert the needle purl wise through the first 3 stitches on the left-hand needlestep 3

  3. Now wrap the working yarn around the right-hand needle….

    step 3

  4. … and pull the yarn through the 3 stitches…

    step 4 of working a p3tog

  5. To complete the decrease, slip the 3 stitches worked off the needle.

    Step 5

  6. The result

    When viewed from the right side of the fabric, this decrease looks exactly like the right-leaning k3tog decrease!The result

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