Help for mittens - newbie

I’ve just started knitting, but I want to be able to make mittens! I’ve read pattern after pattern after pattern, but how one gets around the whole thumb is just confusing! (for 2 needle mittens)
Do you make a button hole then make a thumb later? Or some of the patterns suggest making a certain number of stitches, but I already have more than what they say from the cuff of the mitten. Help? :aww:

I think that if you do the pattern it is easier to understand. They are really not so hard to do. Jump in and try it, then if you get stuck yell help! We are always here. (I’m not too experienced, though I’ve made mittens) Someone is sure to be able to help or at least encourage!

Anyway, you usually finish the fingers then come back to finish the thumb or finish the thumb and come back to finish the fingers. You don’t use all of the cuff stitches on the thumb part…

I can’t follow it though, lol because it doesn’t make sense. For example this is where I’m stuck:

Work st st for 6 rows.
Place marker between middle two stitches. (18 & 19th st) add two stitches, place another marker, Work in st st increasing 2 sts every other Row between marks until you have 14 stitches. Put these 14 on a holder for working thumb later.

the cuff has 38 stitches, and I see where the marker goes, but then how to do “increase” to get 14… which is smaller than the cuff?

See where it says “increasing 2 sts every other Row between marks until you have 14 stitches”? That’s where you go from 2 sts to 14.

Hold you hand out for a minute. See how the base of your thumb goes out above your wrist? That’s where the mitten gets bigger than those original 38 stitches. You pick the spot, set aside two stitches, and increase until you have 14 stitches between the markers.. (ummm…I think that would leave you with 50 total, but do your own counting 'cause I’m half awake :D) When you have 14 stitches between the markers, you’ll put them on a stitch holder (big safety pin, chunk of yarn, whatever) and keep knitting the body of the hand on the…ummm…36 stitches or whatever that are left. Like she said, start on a mitten and you’ll get it.

OH! Your “buttonhole” idea? Yeah, that’s on the right track. You leave the stitches live on the stitch holder and work around them.

Do you mean you are confused by increase until you get 14 when you already have 38 which is more than 14? You are increasing just the thumb section until it has 14 stitches and then you take those 14 that are for the thumb and save them to use later.

I was in the same boat, but I wanted to knit fingerless mittens as my first non-hat/scarf project. I used this pattern, and just worked it row by row. The first hand turned out better than the second, though, because I was tired and knitting in less than perfect light for the second hand…I’m going to make another second hand tomorrow.

Keep asking questions. The folks here are very helpful!