Sunday, January 8, 2012

Convertible Mittens for Men

After knitting a hat for my boyfriend, I wanted to make a pair of matching gloves for him. After a lot of searching, I couldn't find a pattern that I liked, and was very nervous because I had never done a project that was this complicated. And thus, the following pattern was created. Hopefully, these instructions are easy to understand for anyone who wants to take on a project like this. I'll try to take some better pictures in the following week. Feel free to ask any questions or leave some notes or love in the comment section below.


Convertible Mittens for Men


Materials:
Yarn:   I used 2 skeins of Paton’s Classic Wool (approx 400 yards). Almost the whole project is worked double stranded.
Larger Needles:   5.0 mm/US#8 DPNs (or whatever size you need to match the gauge listed below)
Smaller Needles:   4.0 mm/US#6 DPNs (for smaller needles that are used for ribbing, I suggest using needles that are two US sizes smaller than the larger needles that match the gauge)
Extras:   yarn needle (to weave in ends), stitch markers, waste yarn in alternate color

You can probably use circular needles for the main mitten part, I just find DPNs easier to work with. Use whatever you are comfortable with and makes you happy!

Gauge:
8.5 stitches/12 rows = 2 inches in stockinette on LARGER needles

Skill Level: 
Easy/Intermediate

Abbreviations Used:
I wanted to make these mittens easy to understand so that anyone can make them. So, below I have included the abbreviations that I used and links to Youtube videos and Knitty articles that demonstrate some of the stitches.

DPNs = double pointed needles (http://knitty.com/ISSUEsummer03/FEATtheresa.html)
k2tog = knit two stitches together (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBpbLmgwHFA)
k3tog = knit three stitches together (just like k2tog, except that you knit 3 stitches together instead of just 2)
M1R = make one stitch right (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCV0VC0Yim4)
MIL = make one stitch left (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmUSinUjZbE)
sm = slip marker (this just means that you move the marker from the left needle to the right one)
ssk = slip, slip, knit stitch (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RGwcYW3GG3M)
sssk = slip, slip, slip knit stitch (just like ssk, except that you slip 3 stitches and knit all 3 together)
EZBO = Elizabeth Zimmerman’s sewn bind off (it’s the fifth one down on the page) (http://knitty.com/ISSUEsummer06/FEATsum06TT.html)

A Few Notes:
This is the first pattern that I’ve ever made and written myself. I tried to edit it as best I could, so if you find any mistakes, feel free to send me a message and I’ll try to fix it (ParisArlette on Ravelry).

Also, I made these mittens for my boyfriend, so the pattern fits his hands. So keep in mind that everyone’s hands are different and that some people have longer fingers than others, etc. So you may have to do some adjusting, and I tried to make some notes in the pattern where you can do that sort of thing. Also, his palm circumference is 9 inches and these fit him pretty snug.

Pattern:
Knit with two strands worsted held together.

With larger DPNs, cast on 36 stitches and distribute then evenly on 4 needles, place marker to note beginning of round.

Wrist:
Rows 1-6:       [k1, p1] x18
Row 7:            [k1, p1] x8, k2tog, [k1, p1] x8, k2tog
Row 8:            [k1, p1] x8, k1, [k1, p1] x8, k1
Row 9:            [k1, p1] x8, k2tog, [p1, k1] x8, p1, knit last and first stitch together
Row 10:          The next stitch is now your first stitch. [p1, k1] x16
Now choose either the Left Hand Gusset or Right Hand Gusset directions and continue to
Row 11.

Left Hand Gusset:
Row 11:          knit
Row 12:          k14, place marker, M1R, k1, M1L, place marker, k17
Rows 13:         k14, sm, knit 3 stitches between markers, sm, k17
Row 14:          k14, sm, M1R, k3, M1L, sm, k17
Rows 15-16:   k14, sm, knit 5 stitches between markers, sm, k17
Row 17:          k14, sm, M1R, k5, M1L, sm, k17
Rows 18-19:   k14, sm, knit 7 stitches between markers, sm, k17
Row 20:          k14, sm, M1R, k7, M1L, sm, k17
Rows 21-22:   k14, sm, knit 9 stitches between markers, sm, k17
Row 23:          k14, sm, M1R, k9, M1L, sm, k17
Row 24:          k14, sm, knit 11 stitches between markers, sm, k17
Row 25:          knit
Row 26:          k14, place all stitches between markers on holder, cast on 2 stitches, k17
Move on to Row 27 instructions below.

Right Hand Gusset:
Row 11:          knit
Row 12:          k2, place marker, M1R, k1, M1L, place marker, k29
Row 13:          k2, sm, knit 3 stitches between markers, sm, k29
Row 14:          k2, sm, M1R, k3, M1L, sm, k29
Rows 15-16:   k2, sm, knit 5 stitches between markers, sm, k29
Row 17:          k2, sm, M1R, k5, M1L, sm, k29
Rows 18-19:   k2, sm, knit 7 stitches between markers, sm, k29
Row 20:          k2, sm, M1R, k7, M1L, sm, k29
Rows 21-22:   k2, sm, knit 9 stitches between markers, sm, k29
Row 23:          k2, sm, M1R, k9, M1L, sm, k29
Row 24:          k2, sm, knit 11 stitches between markers, sm, k29
Row 25:          knit
Row 26:          k2, place all stitches between markers on holder, cast on 2 stitches, k29
Move on to Row 27 instructions below.

Mitten Top - Both Mitts:
Row 27:          knit
Row 28:          k1, k15 with waste yarn, slip those 15 stitches back to left needle, switch back to project yarn, work 15 palm stitches on smaller needles in k1p1 ribbing, while keeping rest of stitches (back of the hand) on larger needles, k17

The stitches that you made with the waste yarn will be taken out later, so I recommend using a color that is very different from your project yarn and one that is easy to see. When you remove these stitches later, it will create an opening in the glove where you will then knit the fingerless part.

Rows 29-37:   k1, work 15 palm stitches on smaller needles in k1p1 ribbing, knit 17 back of hand stitches on larger needles
Rows 38-48:    knit all 33 stitches using larger needles

If you want to make length adjustments to the overall hand length, you can add or remove rows from the above section.

Row 49:          k2, k2tog, k11, ssk, k16
Row 50:          knit
Row 51:          k1, k2tog, k10, ssk, k16
Row 52:          knit
Row 53:          k2tog, k4, k2tog, k3, ssk, k15, move the final unknit stitch to the beginning of the next row
Row 54:          k2tog, k8, ssk, k13, move your final unknit stitch to the beginning of the next row
Row 55:          k2tog, k1, sssk, k3tog, k1, ssk, k2, sssk, k1, k3tog, k2, move your final unknit stitch to the beginning of the next row
Row 56:          [k2tog] x3, k1, [ssk] x3, k1

Break your thread leaving a long tail (I always leave at least 6 inches) and thread it through the remaining 6 live stitches. Cinch, tie off, and weave in ends.

A quick note about weaving in ends: I found this article to be very helpful with these mittens (http://knitty.com/ISSUEfall04/FEATfall04TT.html). I followed the reverse stockinette instructions. Also, I wove in each of the strands separately. It created twice as many ends to weave in but it made them much less bulky and less noticeable.

Fingerless Section – Both Mitts:
Now that the overall mitten is completed, we need to create an opening in the gloves and then knit the fingerless section. To do this, we need to remove the waste yarn stitches that we knitted earlier. While you’re removing the stitches, carefully pick up the live stitches above and below the waste yarn. There should be 15 on each side of the opening. I recommend just slipping them all on to the larger DPNs.

On ribbed edge (top), bind off using EZBO. I like to use this bind off because it is very stretchy and works well with the gloves. And we have completed the mitten top!

Now for the fingerless part... On larger DPNs, cast on 15 stitches with waste yarn. Using your project yarn, knit the 15 stitches from stockinette (bottom) edge, then the 15 waste yarn stitches. Join in the round and knit 8 rows of stockinette (this just means that you knit all the stitches) for the sleeve inside mitten cap. Then switch to the smaller DPNs and knit 4 rounds of  k1,p1 ribbing. Bind off using EZBO.

Finally, carefully remove the waste yarn at the bottom of the fingerless part and slip these on to DPNs. Using 1 strand of yarn (if you use two, it will feel bulky) stitch the live stitches on the DPNs to the purl bumps inside of the mitten to create the hinge where the mitten cap opens. Remove all remaining waste yarn and weave in all those ends.

Thumb Gusset
Divide your 11 live stitches across three larger DPNs.

Row 1:            knit all 11 stitches, pick up 4 stitches in the open gap, and join in the round.
Row 2:            k11, [k2tog] x2
Rows 3-12:      knit

If you want to make length adjustments to the thumbs, you can add or remove rows from the above section.

Rows 13-14:    [k2tog]; repeat until only 4 stitches are left.

Break your thread leaving a long tail and thread it through the remaining 4 live stitches. Cinch, tie off and weave in ends.

Now, celebrate because you made a convertible mitten!