Virva Fingerless Mitts from Laine Magazine

Virva Fingerless Mitts from Laine Magazine
These were made entirely on a whim. I took it into my head to make a small gift for my Nan (who also likes to knit) as a thank you for sending me on some patterns. I'm not sure why, but fingerless mitts were what sprung to mind, so I started looking through my copies of Laine magazine for some inspiration. The Virva mitts appeared and I knew immediately they would be perfect. The description in the pattern said that they were intended to be made as part of a set, with a hat, all from one skein of yarn. This made them all the more appealing because there was the potential to use one of my sizeable leftovers from another project - I just love putting them to good use. Not as much as I loved how quickly these came together though - cast on and finished in under two weeks!

Virva Fingerless Mitts from Laine Magazine


I had 55g of beautiful Julie Asselin Fino yarn in the Biscotti colourway left over from my Boho Blush shawl. It's a fingering weight blend of 75% merino, 15% cashmere and 10% silk.....there's a lot of luxurious words in there which I feel are entirely appropriate for gifting. It really does feel lovely to wear and to knit with (you can see from pictures it looks grey or beige in different lights). Even better - I used less than 50g in total for the two mitts so I didn't have to worry about running out as I was making them (I had consulted projects on Ravelry before starting and it seemed that it could be done).

Pattern and Instructions

The pattern for these mitts is from Laine Magazine Issue 3. As I said earlier, they are designed with a matching hat, with a view to using one skein for the set. Laine instructions are all found at the back of the magazine, written out. They don't have pictures or diagrams with them, other than a sketch on the pattern page and photographs in the main body of the magazine. I still consider myself to be fairly new to knitting, and I found the instructions clear and simple enough to follow.

Virva Fingerless Mitts from Laine Magazine

This pattern does feature a twisted rib all the way around it. It was partly why I chose it - as I was making these for someone else I figured that the rib would provide an adaptable fit with plenty of stretch. I won't lie - there's a lot of purling and knitting through the back of the loop, which are not my favourite things. However, it's easy to get into a rhythm so no so bad after all. I love the feature stitches over the top of the mitts and these are also easy to create - you just need to follow each line of the pattern. This feature was also what attracted me to the pattern - it adds interest and does not require the use of cable needles (which I hate more than purling even). The length of these mitts is just right and the very top of the mitts feature a reduced stitch count and rib which also adds to the comfort and fit.

Virva Fingerless Mitts from Laine Magazine

If the thumb element of knitting mitts puts you off, I can tell you that these weren't tricky at all. You need to cast on in a row and pick up stitches later, but that's about it. The rib pattern is cleverly adapted up the thumb and looks particularly good (non-knitters are impressed with skill in this area). When it came to binding off, I tried a new method. I'm always wary of being too tight at this point and have previously experimented with Jeni's surprisingly stretchy bind off, but wasn't sure how this might look with the twisted rib element. Having a look around, I decided to try a sewn bind off on the basis that this is a stretchy bind off and also matches the look of the long tail cast on that I used. I found this to be quite easy to learn and it did all the things I needed it to. I used this class on cast ons and bind offs from Bluprint (bought whilst it was Craftsy) but there are plenty of free tutorials out there.

They have gone down a treat with the recipient and I'm looking to make some for myself as well. They fit the pair of us just fine.

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Welcome to Sewing and Other Stories; my journeys with sewing and knitting; pattern reviews, tips and guides for beginners. I'm also the designer behind West Beach Knits knitting patterns and I host a Knitting and Sewing channel on YouTube where you can see all of this in person. Come have a look!

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