Victorian Crafts: Fingerless Mitts



Directions to net a pair of Victorian fingerless silk or cotton mits from an 1850s lady's magazine. Fingerless mittens were a popular accessory throughout the 19th century.

Victorian Mittens
Victorian Mittens

Four skeins of very fine silk or cotton for one pair of mittens.

Begin on a foundation of 78 loops.
Net 14 rounds, or 7 diamonds.

Decrease, by netting 2 loops together once in every fourth round for 6 times, but not always in the same place.

There should now be 38 rounds, or diamonds, from the foundation.

Then net 54 rounds without decreasing, making 46 diamonds from the foundation.

Now net 2 into the 1st loop, the remainder of the round without increasing— thus increasing once only in the round.

Net 3 rounds.

Net 1; net 2 into the 2nd loop; net the remainder without increasing, till within 3 loops of the end; net 2 into the 1st of these; net the other two plain.

Net 3 rounds.

Net 2; net 2 into the 3rd loop; net the remainder without increasing till 4 from the end; net two into the 1st of these; net the 3 without increasing.

Net 3 rounds.

Continue thus to increase twice in every 4th round, leaving 2 more loops each time between the double stitches (thus, after leaving first 3 and then 5 between, as just directed, next leave 7, then 9, etc.), till there are 100 loops all round.

Now divide the mitten in half, taking as the middle the center diamond between the double stitches.

Count 13 loops on each side of this diamond, making in the whole 27 loops; join these together for the thumb.

On these 27 loops net 10 rounds, or 5 diamonds; then one pattern of Leaf Netting, thus: Net 5 in the 1st loop, 5 in the 2nd; net 3 loops plain; repeat from all round.

Next round: net the 11 loops together; net 4 plain; repeat all round. These two rounds complete one pattern of Leaf Netting.

Net 2 plain rounds.

Net 1 pattern round of leaf netting.

Net 2 plain rounds.

Take a No. 10 pin, and net 6 stitches in 1 loop, miss 3 loops, repeat.

Take the smaller pin, and net 1 plain round.

This finishes the edge at the top of the thumb.

Cut off the silk or cotton, and fasten it on at the hand.

Net 20 plain rounds, or 10 diamonds; net the edge as directed for the thumb.

Cut the mitten from the foundation. Fasten the silk on to this point, which is the arm, and commence the Border and Edging:

Net 1 pattern of leaf netting.

Net 2 rounds plain.

Net 1 pattern of leaf netting, using No. 10 pin in the 1st round, and the smaller pin in the 2nd round.

With No. 10 pin net 10 loops in one, miss 4 loops, repeat.

With No. 10 pin net 1 round plain.

With smaller pin net 1 round plain.