Saturday, October 24, 2015

The mitten pattern is one that made me pretty excited to come up - because so many mittens follow a set scheme based on a cylinder, and depend on your hands to stretch them into the shape that will fit you.  There's nothing wrong with that - I've knitted a gazillion mittens that follow that shape and they're okay, but I wanted to come up with something that matches the shape of my hand and wrist, the wrist just a tad thinner than my four fingers across the knuckles and the widest part of the hand where my widest part is - across from the lower knuckle of my thumb to the outside edge of the palm.  This one does that!

And it will surprise you, but I promise you, it is logical!
Remember, by the way, this is the same yarn I used for the thinker's hat - that 200 gram skein.  It is enough for the mittens AND the hat.  I used size 9 double pointed needles.  You'll also need two 8" lengths of waste yarn in a contrasting color and a yarn needle.

You'll start by knitting two thumbs.
***Make the sort of slip knot you use to begin a crochet chain or casting on for knitting.  Put the loop of the slip knot over your  first needle and leave the inside of the knot well open.  (YO, put the needle through the knot opening and pull up another stitch. You now have three stitches).  Do this five more times for a total of 13 stitches, which you're distributing onto three of those dp needles - the one you started with and two more needles. **

Knit into every stitch, at the end, transfer the last stitch to the first needle and knit the last stitch and the first stitch together - 12 stitches total.
Knit around even until there are 11 rounds of knitting.
Turn the knitting in your hand and PURL 7 stitches.
Turn it again and knit those 7 stitches, and knit around one more time..  Break yarn, Thread the waste yarn onto a yarn needle and run it through all the stitches.   Set this aside and make a second thumb.

Begin as you did for the thumbs, following instructions between ** and ** BUT this time you'll end up with 15 stitches.
Knit one round even.
K1 into the front AND the back of each stitch all around - 30 stitches.
Knit even on these 30 stitches until you have 26 rounds from the cast on. 

Now you need one of those thumbs.  Remember each as a 7 stitch section with two additional rows and a 5 stitch section that doesn't.  You want those five stitches first - holding them next to the hand section, you'll knit off one from the thumb and one from the hand, together, as one stitch.  ***Do it again and slip the first stitch on the needle over that second stitch.  Repeat from *** until those five stitches have been joined to the hand and at the same time, bound off.  Then continue knitting around the mitten.

Here's the only very-slightly-tricky part - When you've knitted around the mitten, you're back to the rest of the thumb, just hanging there.  Pick up one stitch between the hand part and the thumb, knit the rest of the thumb stitches, pick up another stitch between the hand part and the thumb on the other side, and knit around once. 

Then count your stitches.  You will have way more than 30, and you do want to get back to 30 for the ribbing you're going to start any moment.  But first, you'll have to knit 2 together on a very occasional basis over the next three rounds of the mitten, to gradually return to having 30 stitches.

Got 30?  Terrific!  Knit around in a K1, p 1 rib for at least 15 rounds for a good, long wrist portion of your mittens.  This should take you about 1/3 of the way up your forearm when you put on the mitten, plenty long enough to tuck into the sleeve of your coat, but if you want to make it longer, be my guest.  Bind off when ready and complete the second mitten the same way.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~copyright Karey Solomon 2015

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