Picking up stitches at thumb gusset of mitten?

Okay, so I finished one of the toddler mitts I started making yesterday, but I had trouble at the thumb gusset that I want to get straightened out before I get to that same place on the 2nd mitt. (Ingy, thanks for your help yesterday - it was just as you said. And made sense once I got there). My problem was picking up stitches.

The thumb gusset has 5 live stitches and 5 CO stitches. I am supposed to pick up a stitch on either side of the 5 live, to make 7. Then I pick up 6 stitches from the 5 CO (these are CO with backward loop CO). I watched Amy’s video about picking up stitches and I did multiple google searches on the subject but am still at a loss. Everything I see seems to be about picking up stitches from a BO (or CO) edge (like for adding to a sweater or something) and not from live stitches. If I’m picking up from live, is this just the same as m1 or some other kind of increase? And how do I pick up 6 sts from 5 CO? The stitches are all so tiny (using #3 needles) it is very hard to get in there and figure out what I’m doing.

I am really branching out to be doing these mittens, and am proud of even doing them at all (have never knit something entirely on dpns before, never used such small needles, never put stitches on a holder, never even used the make 1 increase before!), but I am pretty frustrated with my inability to figure the gusset out. Any help greatly appreciated! :thumbsup:

You’re not really picking up from live stitches, since only 5 are live at this point. If you have trouble picking up the stitches you can use a crochet hook to pull the yarn through and then put that loop on your needle.

I was going to say M1 would be ok on the sides of the live stitches, and it might be, but I’m afraid you could get a hole. You could try it.

M1 is pretty much what I did from the live stitches last night, and I did end up with a hole on both side of the thumb, which I stitched up when I finished (but I still don’t like how it looks). What other options do I have? I find it very confusing.

I used a crochet hook to pick up from the CO sts last night but still had trouble, I guess because of everything being so small. And how do I get 6 from 5 when they are just little single CO sts? :thinking:

Working on things that small is hard. When you pick up 6 from 5, there is a technique someone talked about and I can’t for the life remember for sure. I’ll have to think on it.

Thanks, Ingrid. Since I’m new to mitten knitting I’ve started trying to read other mitten patterns to see what I could learn about the thumb. I’m starting to surmise that when it says to pick up sts at the thumb gusset, it is leaving it up to you how to increase, as opposed to the more technical definition of picking up stitches from a BO or CO edge. Do I have that right? :??

Sometimes mitten patterns set up a section where you increase for the thumb gusset between to particular stitches, get all the stitches on the needle and then knit them either flat or in the round. For your little mitten, I bet you could just pick up the 5 and then increase in one of them if you think it needs it.

Thank you! MUAH!

For future use…the Knitty Mittens 101 article has a great method for doing the thumb stitches…I had to read it a few times before it clicked, but it did, and I think it’s a fab alternative to slipping the thumb stitches to a holder and casting on new ones to continue the body of the knitting:

You’re going to use [a piece of] scrap yarn to mark where you will create the thumb.

For right mitt: At the start of the next round, work with the scrap yarn the required number of stitches for the thumb. Slide these thumb stitches back onto the left needle, and work again with working yarn. Finish round as normal.

This way, when you remove the waste yarn you have all live stitches, and only have to pick up a few for the gusset.

Thanks, Julie! :thumbsup:

When you pick up the sts from the live ones, do you use a M1 increase, or something else? I think I did a kfab inc last night and the little bar it made at the base of the sts sticks out, well, like a sore thumb. :rollseyes:

Actually, with that method you just put the live stitches on your needles, attach the yarn and start knitting. The only stitches you have to pick up are the (in my case, two) stitches in between for the gusset. :thumbsup: