Knitting Jargon on the Interwebs

Yesterday at the LYS, I took part in a discussion about SABLE.ufo theater marquee from

What, you never heard of SABLE?  You might even be a member of SABLE!

SABLE stands for "Stash Acquired Beyond Life Expectancy".  A person becomes a member of this group when she owns more yarn than she can reasonably expect to knit in her years remaining on this mortal coil.*

*As I recall, my MIL didn't find this one too humorous when I explained it to her once, either.

I think I'm in it already, partly because I have a LOT of yarn, but also because I end up knitting everything about 2 or 3 times — since I insist on continuing to design stuff from the ground up, instead of following patterns.

Anyway, during yesterday's discussion, someone suggested that I need to put up a glossary of this kind of stuff, for those who don't spend as much time on a computer as I do.  OK, here goes!

I'm not going to include regular knitting abbreviations like "K2tog".  This list is what I consider to be knitting abbreviations birthed by the interwebs — the kind of thing you aren't likely to see in a pattern, but might find on my blog or (sob) someone else's.

Types of Knitting Projects

FO: Finished Object (yay!)

OTN:  On The Needles

TOAD:  Trashed Object, Abandoned in Disgust

UFO: UnFinished Object, also BUFO: Boring UnFinished Object

USO: UnStarted Object

WIP: Work In Progress, also SWIPE: Stalled Work In Progress

People & Publications

DH (or W, S, D, MIL, etc): Dear Husband (or Wife, Son, Daughter, Mother-In-Law, etc)

EZ: Elizabeth Zimmerman (famous knitter)

VK: Vogue Knitting

Knitting Techniques

Frog:  to pull out mass quantities of knitting by removing the needles and pulling on the working yarn.  Because a frog says, "rip-it, rip-it".

KAT: Knitting Against Time — can you say, "Xmas presents"?

KIP: Knitting In Public

KIV:  Knitting in Vehicle

KO:  Knitting Opportunity

SSS:  Second Sock Syndrome.  When a knitter has a hard time finishing a pair of socks.  Usually because the second sock has become a BUFO.

Tink:  Undoing knitting one stitch at a time.  From "knit" spelled backwards.


Yarn Jargon

LYS: Local Yarn Store

LYSO: Local Yarn Store Owner

NTINAMY: Not That I Need Any More Yarn.  Usually followed by "but" and said while standing at the register at the LYS.

SABLE: Stash Acquired Beyond Life Expectancy

SEX: Stash Enrichment eXpedition.  Can be done in public, even!

Stash:  I remember once talking to a knitter who was uneasy about the use of this word to describe one's yarn collection, because it had the connotation of drugs and addictions.  Yeah.  Let's not over-think that one, shall we?

YCZ: Yarn Containment Zone.  The place where you hide keep the stash.

YAQ: Yarn Acquisition Quest.  Similar in intent to SEX, except that sometimes a quest has a specific goal in mind, such as one more skein of whatever it is you just ran out of.


Did I miss anything?

  12 comments for “Knitting Jargon on the Interwebs

  1. The Pats
    12/15/2009 at 7:25 PM

    Love this!

  2. Sarah
    12/28/2009 at 11:04 PM

    I love the knitting jargon. Wow, I certainly see myself. SABLE

  3. Corinne
    01/08/2010 at 3:25 AM

    AKC – Actual Knitting Content

    Typically used when posting a thread about knitting in a non-knitting group or forum.

    • 01/08/2010 at 9:09 AM

      I’ve also seen “OKC”: similar, but kind of the other way around — when someone posts something mostly off-topic, but includes a bit that’s on-topic, that’s the “obligatory knitting content”.
      I tried to keep this list to a manageable size and a little less geared to the online experts, so I didn’t include a lot of the forum-specific ones!

  4. Paula Killian
    02/25/2015 at 5:11 AM

    Thank you! I've never seen all the jargon in one place …. laughed myself silly….what a great way to start the day!


  5. Eileen
    08/16/2015 at 10:05 AM

    TAAT: two at a time

  6. 08/16/2015 at 10:41 AM

    NTTEOTR not till the end of the row!

  7. 08/17/2015 at 12:12 AM

    Dear Tess – this is brilliant! May I translate this into German and publish it on my MaschenGold-facebook page?


    • 08/17/2015 at 10:07 AM

      Sure, although I don’t know how well the acronyms will translate!  You can link back to this page so people can see the originals, too.

  8. 08/19/2015 at 1:23 AM

    Thank you, Tess!

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