Wednesday, February 21, 2007

My first knit fingerless mittens

This was my very first attempt to knit with double pointed needles. I am forever searching for nice fingerless gloves to use on the computer, as I always suffer from freezing cold "mouse hand". The retail ones I have cover the thumb, which make it hard to use the back button on the mouse and also hard to use on a laptop. I wanted a pair that covered the fingers and thumb enough to keep them warm and make typing and mousing easy. I picked this pattern from Susan Aguirre because it looked simple and I could actually read it (after all I'm still a novice!). The first mitt had only a pouch for the thumb and really left it too chilly (hence it is hiding behind the other one in this picture), so the second mitt has a longer thumb (although still not quite right, fits Doug's thumb better than mine). After wearing these for several hours at work, I found that my fingertips were still a bit cold, but my palms were hot and sweaty. There's no satisfying this geek. Maybe I need to spring for a heated mouse (but no back button on this one!). But during the first hour, the fingerless mittens were definitely the best thing that I've used with a computer.

Here are some more pictures Adam and I took during the process:

When I look at these pictures, I think:
  • Are double pointed needles just a medieval torture device?
  • I must not like my new PureVision contacts as I'm always wearing glasses
  • Put some lotion on those hands!
So here is my modified pattern:
  1. Use Lion Brand Chenille and size 5 dpns (qty 5)
  2. Cast on 32 stitches and transfer to 4 needles
  3. k2p2 ribbing for 12 rows
  4. knit 3 rows
  5. on row 4, increase by knitting into the front and back of stitch at the beginning and halfway through the round (both side edges of the mitten).
  6. repeat steps 4 and 5 four times until you have 40 stitches, even out 10 stitches per needle
  7. knit 3 rows
  8. k2, m1, knit around until you have 2 stitches left, m1, k2
  9. knit next row
  10. repeat steps 8 and 9 six times keeping the increases on the same needles (maybe here we could try 5 or 4 to make the thumb less bulky)
  11. knit around until you have 8 stitches left with the increases (2 more than the number of increases)
  12. transfer the 8 stitches from the last needle and the 8 stitches from the first needles onto a stitch holder
  13. even remaining 36 stitches on 4 needles, 8 and 10 to a needle
  14. join the body and knit 8 rows
  15. k2p2 for 8 rows
  16. purl wise cast off
  17. for the thumb, transfer stitches to 3 needles and knit 6 rows
  18. purl wise cast off
If I had seen this pattern on the web, I would've thought it was way too complicated. I guess you live and learn!

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