Monday, October 31, 2011

Mustard Gloves - Tricks For Picking Up Stitches

As I mentioned in my last post about these gloves, I started these gloves about 6 months ago.  I was fresh off my own pair of turtleneck gloves and I was curious about how to avoid the holes that appear on either side of the thumb when you pick up the stitches for the thumb tube.

I had the holes on the girl gloves, but I thought it was because I was a newbie knitter.  Then, when they appeared on my turtleneck gloves (see the photo below), I realized that the way I was picking up stitches was stretching the other stitches in a way that made it impossible to avoid the holes.

Well, there must be a better way.  Right?  I consulted the googles, which rewarded me with an avalanche of info:

waste yarn thumb trick
glove construction - fingers item 3a
avoiding holes thread, which lead me to ...
short row methods which melted my mind
casting on stitches in the middle of a project
and, glitten video around the 2:30 mark

With all this information fresh in my head, I wanted to make another pair ASAP and try some of these techniques out.  As luck would have it, Urban Craft, one of my fave commenters from the last couple of years, emailed asking me about them and I offered to make her a pair.

What I ended up doing was a mash up of several things I read about.  When I separate the thumb and palm stitches, I cast on 4 stitches near the thumb hole.  So the first mod is that I picked up a stitch on the other side of the column of stitches that runs along the thumb hole.  See it there on the left?

Second, I picked up stitches on the glove IN BETWEEN the stitch columns of the glove.  Does that make sense to you?  So, basically, I picked up an extra stitch because I picked up 5 on on the outside and inbetween each of the 4 cast on stitches.

  Here is the last picked up stitch, which is around the outside of the right-side column of stitches around the thumb hole.

This totally worked to keep away the holes, but on my next pair of gloves, I'm going to try = crossing the previous row's stitches at the point where the gloves meet the thumbtube.

Do you have any other tips for avoiding that hole?
8 Comments (comments are disabled)

Seanna Lea said ...
I am not sure if I have another suggestion, because I don't think it has happened in any of the mittens or fingerless gloves I've made (not that my experience is vast). However, I almost always pick up an additional stitch or two that I decrease away, and one of those is usually the bar between the cast on and picked up stitches. I tend to knit those new edge stitches twisted on the first round, which closes up the holes.

Yours looks great. If it isn't too fiddly, and it works then no need to change it... or are you thinking there might be a better way?
10/31/2011 9:14 AM

futuregirl replied ...
Seanna Lea ... I think the crossing the stitches at the connection point will be the way I go. Gotta try it out. I'm going to make some gloves for Andrew and see how it looks.
11/1/2011 3:00 PM

CitricSugar said ...
I'll have to try this... I knit a ton of mittens but I usually just leave a longer than average tail to start and darn the holes as I weave in the ends.
10/31/2011 9:44 AM

Vicki K said ...
Those holes have really bugged me but I have never thought about tracking down an answer as you have! I am bookmarking this post to follow next time around when I get to that point. Thank you!!
10/31/2011 5:18 PM

Thecrampedhand said ...
I like to pick up extra stitches and then decrease in the next row.But I also found it helps to knit through the back of the loop to tighten up some of the looser stitches and the pick up row sometimes benefits from using one size smaller needle.
Just wanted to say that short row thing isn't nearly as complicated as that example made it.
You'll like it wants you do it.
11/2/2011 7:58 AM

futuregirl replied ...
Thecrampedhand ... Thanks for letting me know about the short rows. I haven't tried them yet. :)
11/14/2011 12:21 AM

Hilary said ...
That looks fantastic!

Like other commenters above, I often pick up two extra stitches and decrease them out on the next row. I also use the end of the yarn used to pick up the new sts to sew up the holes on the sides. If you do it from the inside and follow the stitches, it's practically invisible!

Also, I'd like to echo that short rows aren't nearly as scary as they seem. They're one of those things that seems complicated on paper, but very simple once you actually do it.
11/4/2011 7:27 AM
futuregirl replied ...
Hilary ... I like the idea of following the stitches and weaving. I also can't wait to use short rows for shaping. They seem pretty magical. I wish there was something similar for crocheting, but crochet rows are usually so tall that they aren't as subtle.
11/5/2011 1:17 AM