May 13, 2020

The M1L (which stands for "Make One Left") is a left-leaning increase stitch. It is worked into the horizontal strand of yarn (or "bar") between the first stitch on the left needle and the last stitch on the right. For a right-leaning increase, see M1R.

Insert the tip of the left needle from front to back through the horizontal strand (or “bar”) between the next and last stitch to be worked:
The strand to be picked up is circled in red.
This forms a loop on the left needle. With the right needle, knit this strand through the back loop.

The make-one increases can be a bit tricky to get the hang of. It’s often difficult to insert the right needle through the back leg of the strand, since it’s not a true "loop."

I use my left index finger to pull the strand backward on the needle, opening up a little space. This may take some practice!
Close-up of a M1L circled in red. The red arrow indicates the new column of stitches. If you look closely, you can see that the stitch leans to the left.