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November 19, 2005

Gnomittens!

In an effort to make it look like I did something other than roll out of bed, update my blog, and fix the mittens, I changed my shirt. Just for you guys.

Good news: the mittens are fixed! You get pictures! RAWK ON!

I found that it's really hard to show off gloves/mittens without making jazz hands poses.


See what I mean?



The frame of the window made a dark dark shadow down the left side of the photo, so I lightened everything by 100%. I'm happy the gloves turned out nice and sharp. :) Yay, camera.


And the volunteer fire department is driving around the block inviting us to the turkey raffle (shuffle) over the bullhorn. I thought the loud cellphone guy across the street finally got a speakerphone. Heh.

Guess I'll go yump in the shower (finally) and get ready to win some damn turkeys. Yay!

The Recipe

12/2/05: I'm editing this to include the recipe, since this post already has pictures of the Gnomittens. Like I've said before, I mixed a few patterns together. Mainly, the Cigar and Broad Street mittens from Knitty, but I also got the idea for a lifeline from the Hooray for Me Gloves. Whether I took anything from it, I'm not sure. Also note that this recipe produces mittens that fit my sorta-small hands. The Cigar pattern can provide you with options for making larger gloves; I'm using thinner yarn and size 4 needles instead of worsted weight and size 5 needles. I'm more or less following the instructions for size large, so if you choose a worsted weight yarn and/or go up a needle size, your gloves will turn out larger than mine.

And um, maybe this isn't something that everyone else in the world needs to hear, but the gloves are made exactly the same and can be worn on either hand until you attach the mitten shell. That's kind of something that I needed to hear before attaching the second mitten shell.

Finally, there's a lot of binding off and picking up and casting on when you get to the fingers. I wrote pretty much what the patterns above said, but I actually used the pickup methods that I use for socks; that is, to eliminate holes between the fingers, I picked up more stitches than recommended and just K2tog in the next round to end up with the right number of stitches. Don't worry if there are holes between your fingers, though - when you're rejoining the yarn for each finger, leave a 4-5" tail. Then when you go back to weave in the ends, you can sew the holes shut.

Materials
I used Wool-Ease Sportweight. I can't say how much was used, but I'd already made a pair of socks out of this skein, and after making the Gnomittens, there's still plenty of yarn to make 2 more pairs of socks. If you're using some other sportweight yarn, get enough for a pair of socks (220 yards?) and it'll be plenty.

Size 4 needles (I used the Magic Loop method throughout, but DPNs will also work fine)

Waste yarn (for holding stitches)

Tapestry needle

Gloves (make two):
Cuff
Using Twisted German Cast On, CO 44 sts (partly because it sounds crazy, partly because it's very stretchy)
Join carefully, then knit rounds 1-20 in K2 P2 rib (just over 3", but you can make it longer)

Thumb (part 1) and Pinky (part 1)
Next round: K all sts
Next round (increase round): K1, M1, K to end of round, M1
These are rounds 21 & 22. Repeat them 4 more times. 52 stitches.
K 3 rounds, then work an increase round.
These four rounds are 31-34. Repeat them 2 more times. 58 stitches.
Next round: K to last 7 sts, place next 15 sts on waste yarn for thumb
Next round: CO 1 st, rejoin round, K all sts (44 sts)
K 6 rounds straight (but do a check here and either try the glove on or hold it up to your hand - if it doesn't reach the bottom of your pinky finger, it won't mess anything up to knit a couple more rounds)
This is where I put my lifeline.
Next round: K17, place next 10 sts on waste yarn for the pinky, CO 2 sts, rejoin round and K remaining 17 sts. 36 sts.
K 3 rounds.

Index
K6, place next 24 sts on waste yarn for index finger, CO 2, rejoin, K to end. 14 sts.
K 5 rounds or to bottom of middle knuckle.
BO loosely. For a little elasticity, I bind off in K1, P1 rib.

Middle
Pick up and K 2 stitches from cast on sts from index finger (or near there).
K 5 sts on one side of hand next to index finger, CO 2, K 6 sts on other side of hand next to index finger, join to work in the round. 15 sts.
K 5-6 rounds to bottom of middle knuckle.
BO loosely in 1x1 rib again.

Ring
Pick up and K 2 sts in CO sts from middle finger (or thereabouts)
K remaining 11 sts from waste yarn next to middle finger (13 sts)
Join round and K to the end of the fingertip (my nails are never very long, so I knit until I just covered the end of my finger - it was 18 rounds for me)
Next round: K2tog 6 times, K1
Next round: K2tog 3 times, K1
Break yarn, draw thru remaining stitches, and pull tight.

Pinky
Pick up and K 2 sts in CO next to held sts for pinky
K 10 held sts. (12 sts)
Join and K to end of fingertip (15 rounds for me)
Next round: K2tog 6 times
Next round: K2tog 3 times
Break yarn, draw through remaining sts, pull tight.

Thumb
Pick up and K 1 st in CO next to thumb gusset, K 15 held sts
K 12 rounds, or enough to reach tip of thumb.
BO loosely in 1x1 rib.

Sit back and admire your handiwork. :)


Now, make another glove.

Mitten shell
OK, I have to admit that I used #3 needles here, but #4 would work fine. I meant to use #4s.

CO 28 sts using Twisted German Cast On (or your fav cast on, since these don't HAVE to be stretchy)
Rows 1-9: K2, P2 ribbing (back and forth, not in the round)

Pick up 28 stitches across the knuckles of the glove. For left glove, make sure the thumb is on the right side. :) Important note: For the purposes of writing out the decrease rounds, I'll refer to the sts you picked up as the pickup sts and the sts that started out as K2 P2 rib as the mitten sts. By the time you get to the decreases, it will be obvious that the picked up sts are just as much a part of the mitten shell as the ones that you started with, but I'm referring to the side you're working on.

-If you're using 4 DPNs, divide your sts so that there are 7 on each needle. The needle with the picked up stitches which is closest to the thumb on the left glove and closest to the pinky on the right glove is needle 1.
-If you're using 3 DPNs, put all the pickup sts on one needle (needle 1) and put the mitten sts on needles 2 and 3.
-If you're using magic loop, pick up the stitches from pinky to thumb so that both needles are pointing toward the thumb on the left glove. On the right glove, pick up the sts from thumb to pinky and have both needles pointing toward the pinky.

Join the pickup stitches with the ribbing and knit 20 rounds in st st.
Begin decrease rounds (done just like socks):
1. Needle(s) with pickup sts: K1, ssk, K across pickup sts to last 3 sts, K2tog, K1
Needle(s) with mitten sts: K1, ssk, K across mitten sts to last 3 sts, K2tog, K1
2. K 1 round even
Repeat these two rows until 12 sts remain on each needle.

Using Kitchener stitch, graft remaining sts together with your tapestry needle.

Weave in all your ends and close any gaps with your yarn tails and your tapestry needle.

Gnomad has mentioned that a button to fasten back the mitten flap would be nice. The Broad Street Mitten pattern has instructions for doing this, but she used a different decrease (more hatlike than socklike).