Adding a thumb to mittens when knitting from fingers to cuff

I’m trying to modify a pattern for thumbless baby mittens by adding a thumb. The pattern is knit from the fingers to the cuff, and I would like to keep that orientation because I like the effect of the figure 8 cast on.

But I have never knit mittens before at all, and I can’t quite visualize what some of the written directions mean when it comes to joining the thumb. And all the videos I found knit mittens from the cuff to the fingers.

I’m really rather a beginning knitter, but once I visualize a concept I can usually repeat it. Can you explain what to do in detail terms?

Thank you!

I think you could use the same concept for a thumb as on these fingerless mitts. LINK In the part about doing the Left Hand mitt go down to right after where it says to work 18 rounds of 4X1 rib. Then it gives some directions in “next round” about knitting to a point and then knitting 7 stitches with waste yarn, slipping them back to the right hand needle and then knitting them again with the project yarn. Then you just keep going until you finish the mitten. This mitten is worked cuff to finger tip, but I think you could do the same thing going the other way.

You’ll have to determine the placement for the thumb. This will be just a basic thumb with no gusset or anything. I think you could make both mittens the same way and they would work for either hand.

When you finish the mitten you go back to the waste yarn and take it out and pick up the live stitches, add a few between the needles and then make the thumb out of those stitches. This is for an adult, and you will have to decide how many stitches you need to allow for the thumb. They started out with 7 on the waste yarn and then had 17 for the thumb when they had stitches from both sides of the 7 and a few more added between needles. Your number will be based on how big you want the thumb to be and the weight of your yarn.

To knit the thumb itself you could decrease it like a hat at the top a bit and run a tail through the rest of the stitches and pull to end off the thumb. Make notes so you can work the other one the same way.

Good luck.

Thanks. I can picture the method you’re describing (plus I think there are several videos on YouTube that show this if I get stuck).

I’m sure it would work, but I’m concerned that it will look like I’ve knitted the thumb backwards. Plus, I wasn’t sure I wanted to deal with that kind of seaming at the thumbtip.

Also, I just really want to know what the online directions I’ve seen are talking about. Here’s one example: Steps 3-5 under “Making the thumb” discuss putting the pre-knitted thumb on the finger pocket. I just can’t picture what they mean by joining the thumb with four stitches or what the three-needle bind-off is and how to use it in this circumstance.

Hmmm. I looked at the outline. Some pictures or something might be a nice addition. They don’t even have a picture of the finished mitten. I’m not sure what they mean either. I’ve never tired such a thing. My DH and I have been thinking and maybe the 4 stitches are supposed to be used for the 3 needle bind off. Maybe…Decide where you want to join the thumb and the palm part and select 4 stitches from the hand and put them on a dpn and then take 4 stitches from the thumb and work them together with a 3 needle bind off. There is a video about doing a 3 needle bind off at this pageLINK on this site. Scroll down to “Finishing”, it is the 3rd thing down under that heading.

After that I guess you would work around one side of the hand, then on around the thumb stitches and then the other side of the hand. When you come to the spots where the thumb and hand touch…on the first round you might knit a stitch together from each part or pick up a stitch there or knit though the back loop on the first stitch or something to bring things together more. Experimenting might be in order.

But the other kind of thumb I mention would work fine as far as I can see for a baby or young child. You could look at a glove pattern for how they shape the top of a thumb. There would be no seam at the top, but decrease down to only a few stitches and then run a tail through the live stitches and cinch it down by pulling.

Good luck. I hope you figure something out that works for you.

Okay, that makes sense now. But considering the kind of seam I’d end up with, I think I’ll either do your original idea or try something really wacky and see if it works.

…or try something really wacky and see if it works.

:lol: I like this idea. Really wacky can be good…sometimes. With knitting, at least you can always rip it out and try again. That takes some of the pressure off. :wink: