Perfect Knitted Gloves: Tips for Success

GlovesI’ve never knitted a pair of gloves, if you can believe that. Mittens, fingerless gloves, and wrist warmers are all in my repertoire, but no gloves! The thought of knitting all of those fingers has always steered me away from glove projects.

I usually get about four pairs of those tiny knit gloves that stretch to fit any size hand. Those last me all winter, interspersed with my down mittens for the really cold days. I’m over those gloves, though, they’re too thin for Spokane. And besides, I’m a knitter and therefore I should knit some gloves!

So here’s my plan:

1. Find a pattern.
2. Choose yarn.
3. Knit a gauge swatch.
4. Cast on.
5. Knit, knit, knit.
6. Finish one glove.

It's a nice plan, isn't it? Step 6 is the only step that makes me nervous…

Since I have Ann Budd’s The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns, which has a whole section on making simple gloves, the pattern-finding is done. Step 1, check.

I’ve mentioned before that I have a ball of Socks that Rock sock yarn (not to mention all the sock yarn I got at the sock summit), and a couple of other choices, too. I like the idea of using sock yarn on small needles so that the gloves will be dense and warm. So here are the choices:
Glove yarn choices

Leave me a comment below and tell me which yarn you like best!

I think my gauge will be about 7 or 8 stitches to the inch, and my hand circumference is about 7½ so I’ll be casting on 60 to 66 stitches.

How do I know this? That’s the brilliance of The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns: Ann gives you options. And by options, I mean OPTIONS! There are glove patterns for five gauges of yarn and seven sizes, and an amazing schematic.

A big bonus in the glove section is the page called "Quick Tips for General Success." Ann provides these tips for each type of pattern and they're easily worth the price of the book. Here are a few to whet your appetite:

  • If you’re using double pointed needles, use this tip to avoid the ladder: When you reach the end of a double-pointed needle, always work two or three stitches from the next needle onto the working needle. Doing so will move the boundary between needles and will help prevent a line of loose stitches between needles.
  • As you knit, poke the finished fingers into the hand to keep them out of your way.
  • To help eliminate holes at the base of fingers, pick up and knit one or two more stitches than required when you begin a finger, then decrease the extra stitch or stitches on the first round of knitting.

That tip for avoiding ladders will work for anything you knit on DPNs, not just gloves. Some of us occasionally have issues with ladders when we use the Magic Loop method (ahem. . .), so this is good for us, too!

I'll keep you posted on the gloves—I need to make quick work of them so I'm not forced to buy another pair of those little stretch gloves!



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