Gloves for Birthday Man

Published on Thursday December 3rd, 2009

Mr. G got a pair of fingerless gloves (actually a tweed set from this same pattern that I never Ravelled) for his birthday last year. He loved them. He wore them regularly. Alas, their little threesome eventually parted ways, as so often happens with gloves and their wearers. One glove struck off to make its fortune elsewhere and was never seen again. I told my husband I’d knit him a new pair, and he some ideas for improvements: a longer, snugger cuff. Short fingers. (I grimaced inwardly about the fingers, since they demand time and fiddliness out of all proportion to their total stitch count, but this is True Love, people. True Love doesn’t balk at fingers on gloves.)

I bought the yarn last March in Seattle at Acorn Street Yarn Shop, Rauma Finullgarn in a rich heathery brown with hints of red. (It matches Mr. G’s new beard.) I figured I’d make up the pattern as I went. Seed stitch rib for a handsome, not too clingy cuff, a variation on Ripple Stitch for the back of the hand.


I consulted with Katrin about the finger placement, as she is the reigning expert. Here’s the formula she suggested for setting up the fingers:

1. Divide the total number of stitches for the hand by 4.

2. Subtract 2 from the little finger and add them to the number for the pointer finger.

3. Put the stitches for the little finger on waste yarn, cast on 3 stitches to bridge between the little finger and the ring finger, and work two more rounds on the remaining stitches.

Then you work one finger at a time, putting the live stitches for the others on waste yarn and casting on 3 between fingers. Katrin’s reasoning for adding the stitches subtracted from the little finger to the pointer finger is that the pointer is your largest finger. She’s perfectly right. However, the middle two fingers are actually getting a total of 6 stitches added to their count because of the cast-on between fingers; the pointer and little fingers only get 3 added. So the pointer winds up at +5 while the middle and ring are both +6. So next time I might actually subtract a stitch each from the middle and ring fingers’ allotment to add to the pointer, too. It wouldn’t be missed on the palm side.


Obviously, we need photos of the gloves ON Birthday Man. He was napping when I took these, trying not to come down with the creeping crud. (Knock on wood, it seems to have worked.) Must remember to bring the gloves and the camera on Sunday when we make our usual stop for coffee after choir.

9 Comments to “Gloves for Birthday Man”

  1. Tone Comment Says:

    Lovely fiddly gloves!

    I balk at the idea of knitting my husband skistockings, the long kind. The kind that I started in 1993. Have to remind my self that it is True Love. Maybe I should start over again – with the stockings I mean!

  2. Sandy Comment Says:

    What a beautiful rich color! I’m giddy with that brown. It is gorgeous!

    Lark (I think that’s the puppy’s name, isn’t it?) didn’t perhaps maybe unintentionally run off with one of the gloves, did she? I have a cat that occasionally sometimes without meaning to kind of runs off with wool socks or gloves.

    It’s an addiction. They can’t help it.

    Having yarny addictions myself, I try to be understanding.

  3. Debby Comment Says:

    That IS true love. The new gloves are very handsome!

  4. Wendolene Comment Says:

    What an excellent gift. They look perfect against those bright golden leaves!

  5. Seanna Lea Comment Says:

    These are some gorgeous mostly fingerless mitts. It’s nice when our knitting efforts are paid off. I don’t think my husband understands how much of a little zing to the heart it is that he wears the hat I made him a year or so ago.

  6. jane Comment Says:

    Gloves to match his beard, awesome! Those are great, and thank you for posting the finger-size maths, these things are handy to know and tricky to work out. Happy Birthday Mr. G!

  7. mick Comment Says:

    What a loving gift. It’s very cool that he not only loves handknitted gifts, but thinks of ideas for designs! Also, the fingers sound quite fiddly. Good for you for tackling them.

  8. balzac Comment Says:

    Those gloves are really beautiful. Yarn, design, itty bitty finger thingees.

  9. Carmen Comment Says:

    Love them! I like that these fingerless gloves are manly looking because sometimes the patterns look too girly for for a guy.
    I have been making gloves for the last year and can’t seem to stop.