So you have to start knitting gloves at some point don’t you? Well to be honest, they always made me a bit nervous. You always see people with a handful of DPNs and such little rounds with a ton of loose ends and contrast yarn all over their samples……. frightening!Well I couldn’t avoid them any more.
Gloves were such a prominent feature on the AW13 catwalks that I just had to bite the DPN bullet and get in there. To be fair, I probably should have started with something a little less ambitious but you know me…. all fashion and no fear, plus the Marc Jacobs gloves with the mesh effect were such a key trend find and something I was dying to try.
So like a knitting fiend I went off and designed and swatched. A few hours later and with some glove making research under my hat, before I jumped in, I managed to find a great video on YouTube [where else]by VeryPink Knits. Well it seems to me that actually, the ” knitting the gloves ” bit is actually really easy. The only hard bit is knowing all of the tricks to get them looking perfect as you go along. The video was really helpful and not the only one on knitting gloves, so you can find others that you prefer, but I wanted to list a few more tricks I learnt and a few adjustments to the tips that I have found making the gloves.
Now on the video, Staci from VeryPink Knits takes you through one of her knitting patterns for basic gloves, which of course you have to buy if you want to follow the video tutorial perfectly. However as a designer this bit didn’t bother me. As you follow the step by step video, each of the 9 glove knitting steps will focus on a different element of making the gloves which is great, but there were a few elements that I came across that I would and did change for my own pattern through trial and error.
The basic glove is pretty straight forward and it’s only when you get to the fingers that all of these tips really come into work. For example, on the video, Staci suggests linking the first and second finger together by picking up 1 stitch in between. Well I was knitting on 4mm needles and 1 stitch didn’t look right or fit well. Instead. as I started to knit each finger, I cast on 2 stitches each end of the round [ the bit that will make the space between 2 fingers ]. It gave me a little flat part as I knitted in the round and sat much flatter when I was trying them on. As I moved onto finger 2 it was easy enough to pick up these stitches to again make 2 additional stitches in between the front and the back of the finger. It also fit much better with 2 stitches rather than just the one. When I tried 1 stitch, I found I was getting a lot of holes where the yarn was stretching and the fit was way too tight. I wouldn’t do this at the edges of the gloves though as it will puff out the finger and look very odd.
Another point was to slip the stitches off onto contrast waste yarn when they are not in use. This is great if you want to try the gloves on, but actually if you are knitting any kind of texture like I was or with a combination of more than 1 yarn, again like mine, the contrast yarn was getting lost when I placed the stitches back on the needle and I ended up having to frog a lot of rows, just to salvage the textured stitch. I actually use this method in a lot of other projects and designs, but for some reason with gloves, it just didn’t help. My suggestion is to use either a couple of larger holding needles/stitch holders or a few smaller ones. This will give you a very clear picture of where your stitches are at all times.
My other suggestion on this same point is that I bought 2 sets of 4mm dpns so that I could also leave the stitches not being used on them whilst I knitted each finger with the others. You have to add and remove the stitches quite a bit, so this sped up my process of knitting, but you do have to be careful they don’t fall off.
My glove journey continues but I’ll keep you updated on the progress and anymore tips I come across as I go. Here is the link to the VeryPink video if you want to knit along: http://youtu.be/L6ODA0nfIIE