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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

FO and Free Pattern: Thrummed Mittens

Here is the finished mitten:

This is a very basic mitten pattern, with a thrum knit into every third stitch.  The mitten will seem large on the outside, but the thrums take up a lot of space on the inside, so all will be well.

Here are some pictures of how to make a thrum, as well as how to knit one:

This is the roving, with the correct amount pulled off to make the thrum:

Fold the ends of the roving towards the center and twist it a bit:

Insert your needle as if to knit, then wrap the thrum around the needle:

Knit the stitch, catching and pulling the thrum through as you do so:

On the next round, you will knit the thrummed stitch through the back loop:

Give a gentle tug on the thrum to even it out, if necessary:

And it's done:

Thrummed Mitten Pattern

Materials:  4 oz worsted weight wool yarn
                    5 oz wool roving -- combed merino top is the best

Needles:  I used size 7 40 inch Addi circulars to do Magic Loop, but you can use DPNs if you prefer.  Take the time to do a gauge swatch, including thrums.

Gauge:  18 st and 24 rows over 4 inches in stockinette with thrums

Thrum pattern:

Round 1:  *K2, K1th, repeat from * to end.  (K1th means to insert your needle into the next stitch to be knit, then wrap a thrum around the needle and knit it into the stitch along with the yarn.)

Round 2:  *K2, K1thtbl, repeat from * to end.  (K1thtbl means to knit the thrummed stitch through the back loop to twist it, which secures the thrum.)

Rounds 3 and 4:  Knit.

Cast on 40 stitches, then K2, P2  for 20 rows. (If you'd like to make a smaller mitten, cast on fewer stitches, but make sure that the number of stitches in the hand section is a multiple of 3, as the thrum pattern repeat has 3 stitches.  Your completed gusset will contain 3/8 of the total cast on stitches; for example, if you cast on 24 stitches for a child's mitten, your gusset will contain 9 stitches.)

Round 1:  K1, M1, K20, M1, K to end (42 stitches).
Round 2:  Knit.
Round 3:  *K2, K1th, repeat from * to end.
Round 4:  *K2, K1thtbl, repeat from * to end.

Begin gusset:  If you are making a smaller mitten, pay attention to the number of stitches you have between your markers.  When you have 3/8 of the total number of your cast-on stitches, stop doing the gusset increase rows and skip ahead to Round 19.

Round 5:  K21, PM (place marker), M1, PM, knit to end.
Round 6:  Knit to marker, M1, K1, M1, knit to end.
Round 7:  *K2, K1th to marker; K1, K1th, K1; *K2, K1th to end.
Round 8:  *K2, K1thtbl to marker; K1, M1, K1thtbl, M1, K1; K2, *K1thtbl to end.
Round 9:  Knit.
Round 10:  K to marker; K1, M1, K3, M1, K1; K to end.
Round 11:  *K2, K1th to marker; K3, K1th, K3; *K2, K1th to end.
Round 12:  *K2, K1thtbl to marker; K1, M1, K2, K1thtbl, K2, M1, K1; *K2, K1thtbl to end.
Round 13:  Knit.
Round 14:  Knit to marker; K1, M1, K7, M1, K1: knit to end.
Round 15:  *K2, K1th to marker; K2, K1th, K2, K1th, K2, K1th, K2; *K2, K1th to end.
Round 16: *K2, K1thtbl to marker; K1, M1, K1, K1thtbl, K2, K1thtbl, K2, K1thtbl, K1, M1, K1; *K2,K1thtbl to end.
Round 17:  Knit.
Round 18:  K to marker, K1, M1, K11, M1, K1; k to end.
Round 19:  *K2, K1th to marker; K3, K1th, K2, K1th, k2, K1th, K3; *K2, K1th to end.
Round 20:  *K2, K1thtbl to marker; K3, K1thtbl, K2, K1thtbl, K2, K1thtbl, K3; *K2, K1thtbl to end.
Round 21-22:  Knit.
(Repeat rounds 19-22 if needed for gusset length.)

Round 23:  *K2, K1th to marker; remove marker, slip all st onto waste yarn, remove second marker; *K2, K1th to end.
Round 24:  *K2, K1thtbl to end.
Rounds 25-26:  Knit.

Continue knitting the thrum pattern (see above) until hand is about 1/2 inch shorter than the longest finger.  Do rows 1 and 2 before beginning decrease rows.

Decrease Row 1:  *K5, K2tog to end.
Decrease Row 2:  *K4, K2tog to end.
Decrease Row 3:  *K1, K2togth -- add a thrum to each K2tog stitch-- to end.
Decrease Row 4:  *K1, K1thtbl to end.
Decrease Rows 5, 6, and 7:  K2tog to end.

Cut yarn, leaving a 6 inch tail, thread tail through tapestry needle, slip remaining stitches off needles onto yarn tail, pull tight, weave in end.


Starting at right side of gusset stitches, slip all stitches onto needles.  Pick up 4 stitches across thumb opening, begin round there.

Round 1:  *K2, K1th (fudging if you need to to make the thrums line up with the ones below) to last 4 stitches, K2tog twice.
Round 2:  *K2, K1thtbl to end.
Rounds 3 and 4:  Knit.

Continue until thumb is 1/2 inch shorter than you want it to be, ending with a Round 2.  K2tog for 2 rounds, cut yarn, thread tail through tapestry needle, pull through stitches, tighten, weave in end.

Make second mitten exactly as you did the first.


  1. Thank you for this post! I purchased the kit from Mary Maxim and having your photos are a great help!

  2. Thank you so much for the free pattern. I'm going to use your pattern to teach 4 or 5 other women to knit thrummed mittens. We're using it exactly as you've printed it here and I've provided them with your web site address so they can explore your other patterns and enjoy your work.
    Saegertown, PA

  3. Thank you for the lovely pattern and precise instructions and photos! I have read somewhere that the thrums felt over time. I will make them as a gift for someone living where it is really cold. Should I wash (and felt) them before giving?

    Mena, AR

  4. Once they felt, they are still super warm and cozy, but it is so luxurious to have your fingers buried in all those thrums when the mittens are new that I would give them as they are so the recipient gets the full experience of both.