conjoined mittens

conjoined mittens

  To my way of thinking, there are few things in the world more satisfying to your soul than a pair of hand  knit mittens.  If you must endure winter, pulling on a pair before walking out the door is like giving yourself a hug and telling yourself it’s all going to be ok.  The best kind are the ones made for you.  But there is no shame in making them for yourself.  Either way, Julie Andrews (NOT Carrie Underwood) would find them worth singing about.

  I recently lost one of my previous pair of hand knit mittens, which I found to be more heart-rending than 80% of the breakups I had in my single life. I retraced my steps for 12 NYC blocks, dragging my tired little 5 year old on her short little legs behind me and away from FAO Schwartz. Blocks 1 through 3, I was sure I could find a single red mitten on the streets of midtown Manhattan during the holiday season.  My confidence waned slowly over the next several blocks, as did the pace of the small and tired child in tow.  By block 7, I started entertaining fantasies of seeing it claimed by a homeless person and graciously offering them the other one.  By block 12, I had to admit defeat.  It was no use. It was gone forever, leaving one sad, solitary  mitten behind.

It was a sad ride home on the path train, one hand chilly and one hand warm and snug.  But I rose the next day with purpose and enthusiasm.  A trip to the yarn store and some guilt free knitting was on the horizon, as was a plan to never let such a tragedy befall me again.  A few nights of clacking needles and some rudimentary sewing later, I had my conjoined mittens ready to wear.  And ready to boldly brave another east coast winter; blizzards, polar vortexes and all.

*I like my mittens a little roomy and wear a size 7 glove.  If you have smaller hands or like them snugger, go down a needle size or two.


for knit mittens:

  • 1 skein Vanna’s choice yarn in mustard or other worsted weight yarn
  • 4 size 7 double pointed needles
  • stitch holder
  • stitch markers
  • crochet hook (optional)
  • scissors

for ribbon fastener:

  • approximately 6′ of grosgrain ribbon
  • 2 sets of snaps
  • needle & thread
  • scissors

for pom poms:

  • yarn in 2 contrasting colors
  • fork
  • 2 safety pins
  • scissors


adapted from knitting pretty

Cast on 36 stitches.  Split cast on stitches between 3 needles, 12 stitches per needle

Join stitches into a circle and knit in K2 P2 ribbing for 4 inches

Knit 1 round in knit stitch (you will be knitting the rest of the mitten in knit stitch now)

Next row: knit 1 stitch and place stitch marker. Increase 1 (by knitting through back of stitch then the front of same stitch), K1 then place 2nd marker. You will have 3 stitches between the markers

Increase 1 again, then knit to the end of row. Knit 2 more rounds

K1, slip marker, increase 1, K1, increase 1, slip marker (5 stitches between markers)

knit to end of round, then knit 2 more rounds

Continue in pattern: K1, slip marker, increase 1 on first and last stitch between markers and knit the stitches between. Knit 2 rounds after each increase round. Continue until you have 13 stitches between markers (knit the 2 rounds after the last increase round)

K1, then slip the 13 stitches between markers onto your stitch holder

conjoined mittens

Knit to end of round, making sure to close gap between 1st and 2nd stitch

Knit 20 rounds or until mitten is 1/2″  from the top of the tip of your longest finger

Begin decrease: Knit 4 stitches, then knit 2 together. Work in this pattern for 4 rows

Last 2 rows: Knit 3, then knit 2 together

Cut yarn leaving a 6″ tail. Thread yarn through the remaining stitches, remove them from needles and pull tightly closed.  Weave in end

For thumb:

Begin by picking up 3 stitches in the knitting above your stitch holder. Do this by threading yarn into the inside of the mitten by the thumb hole. Using a crochet hook or needle, go through a knit stitch to inside of mitten, catch the yarn and pull through to the top. Place new stitch on needle. Repeat 2 times, trying to make stitches evenly spaced

conjoined mittens

Transfer stitches on stitch holder onto 3 needles. Place 2 on the needle with the picked up stitches, 6 on the next needle, and 5 on the last

conjoined mittens

Begin knitting in the round using the knit stitch

Knit 12 rows or until the knit thumb just covers the top of your thumb

Decrease row 1: Knit 1, then knit 2 together. Repeat to end of round

Decrease row 2: Knit 2 together for entire round

Cut yarn leaving a 6″ tail. Thread yarn through the remaining stitches, remove them from needles and pull tightly closed.  Weave in end

Weave in end from beginning of cuff

To make ribbon fasteners:

Measure the length of ribbon you need: Hold one end of the ribbon in each hand. Stretch your arms out wide to each side and pull ribbon straight between them.  Add 4-6″ inches for each side and cut.

Fold over ends of ribbon by 1/2″. Fold again. Stitch closed and sew male parts of snap to folded ends.

Cut 2 small lengths of ribbon, about 2″ each. On each piece, fold ends under towards the middle.  Stitch closed and sew female part of snaps to top sides of ribbon. sew into the inside of the cuff, about 1″ from the edge of the cuff. Don’t stitch all the way through the mitten, just partway through the yarn (so your stitches don’t show on the other side!)


conjoined mittens

 To make the pom poms wrap yarn around the tines of a fork about 30 times. Cut yarn. Cut a 4″ length of yarn and fold in half. Bring folded yarn around the yarn on fork, bring up through the tines and tie. Slip yarn off fork and tighten knot. Cut loops of yarn that was on the fork in half. Fluff ends into a circle and trim to make even. Repeat to make 4 pom poms. Tie 2 together and fasten to mitten using a safety pin from the inside of the mitten.

conjoined mittens




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  • Maureen Meldrum Jan 3, 2016, 8:26 am

    Just found your pattern thanks but what weight of wool is a skein. I am Scottish and work in either ounces or grams. Also what size would you say the mitts are, I am knitting for some handicapped children who are teenagers. Maureen

  • Barb Dec 6, 2015, 3:32 pm

    Instead of ribbon my mom used to crochet a chain the length you have your ribbon & attach it.

  • Georgia Jan 7, 2015, 7:22 pm

    I have just finished the round where I increased1 and have 3 stitches between the markers I increased 1again and knitted to the end of the round I now have 38 stitches. Do I knit 2 more rounds on these 38 stitches before the next increase round?

  • Maggie Ross Jan 5, 2015, 5:16 pm

    How would I adjust this for kids mittens? I’m in a knitting group that wants to make mitts for kids who need them in winter and this pattern looks like one we could use. Love the ribbon idea, my mom did this when I was a kid.

    • krista Jan 7, 2015, 11:06 am

      Hi Maggie! Resizing knit patterns can be tricky business. Generally you can do this by gauge(using bigger/smaller needles or yarn)order by stitch count. Here I would recommend stitch count. I would measure the child’s hand circumference then multiply by the stitches per inch. Make sure to adjust thumb and vertical length. This sounds like a fun challenge for a knitting group. Good luck!

  • Rose Jan 1, 2015, 10:34 pm

    My heart ached when I read your mitten search. Great that you could replace them.
    Thank you for your wonderful tutorial. Will be making my first pair now.
    Stay warm :)R

  • Trudy Dec 25, 2014, 11:05 am

    Our daughter in law was nearly in tears when she told me she had lost one of the mittens I knit for her last year (color work, no less!).

    She didn’t have a five year old with her but otherwise the ‘search and (un)rescue mission’ was about the same emotional roller coaster.

    You can be sure her replacement will be attached to the one remaining!

  • Cashew Dec 13, 2014, 4:12 pm

    I never thought to make pompoms using a fork!! This is brilliant. I must try it, whenever I use cardboard circles they always come out a mess. I found your site looking for someone who agrees thumb increases must be every 3rd row.

    • krista Jan 7, 2015, 11:15 am

      I use the cardboard method when I need bigger pom poems. I give them a trim to neaten them up after they are off the cardboard.

  • Karen Hodson Nov 7, 2014, 12:20 am

    Great pattern, the pictures are very helpful. Thanks!

  • Susie Q Makes Oct 7, 2014, 12:27 pm

    Yes thanks so much for this lovely idea. Handmade mittens are a lovely gift idea for everyone:) Thanks for sharing your story and talent!

  • presly3 Sep 19, 2014, 4:35 am

    Thank you, great site!:)

  • Brenda Joyceh Aug 24, 2014, 4:05 pm

    I sure enjoyed knitting this pattern & I love there is no left & right hand changes .. thank u

  • Bill Feb 19, 2014, 8:29 pm

    Your mittens: I’m learning to knit and have tried three different mitten patterns and have done OK until it comes to finishing the thumb-attaching it to the mitten itself. I just don’t understand about the knitting the extra three stitches at the gap, etc. and how to go about it. Any suggestions for a simpleton novice? Thanks. (I started your pattern today.)

    • krista Feb 20, 2014, 10:10 am

      Bill-to make the extra stitches for the thumb, you are creating them with a new length of yarn. Put the new yarn inside your mitten, put your needle between 2 stitches where you want your new stitch to be, and catch the new yarn and pull through, then place that new stitch on the needle. Then repeat 2 more times. Once you do that, use this new yarn to knit the stitches for your thumb. Good luck with your mittens!

  • Helen Feb 16, 2014, 5:01 pm

    Thank you for the great mitten pattern,I was having some problems with patterns that does not show a picture of the steps while working with the pattern. Thank you.God Bless

  • Joyce Meincke Feb 15, 2014, 4:45 pm

    Thank you so much for the great mitten pattern. I’m starting a pair for myself immediately. I’m sure many more will follow. Thanks again.

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