Twisted Mom Sandy Sitzman sat on the stone steps of an ancient temple ruin in Crete, took a skein of her handspun out of her bag and placed it on the stone to summon her muse, Calertne. Magically the colors in her yarn began to sing to the columns, the stone, the tumbling shapes. The goddess answered and these bodacious fingerless gloves were born.
Sandy and I decided it would be fun to share Calertne on Knittyspin as a tribute to our many past collaborations, so I set to writing the pattern. But I had to make some changes to streamline the construction. I began knitting a prototype in commercial worsted weight yarn and in doing so found that the entrelacs took on a very different look when knitted in the round. Flummoxed, I decided that I might do better if I summoned the muse, so I took a basket of assorted yarns to Nashville, sat on the steps of the Parthenon and summoned away. As I waited for an answer, a skein of Malabrigo Finito fell out of the basket and tumbled down the steps. A little girl ran to catch it and lifted the skein up to me and I realized at that moment that the new construction was far more suited to sleeker fingering weight yarns. Eureka! A fingering weight version would be much easier to size and still retain the proper proportion of the overall shape. It would be urban and understated, wearable with so many styles. And so many knitters have these yarns already waiting in their stashes. I called Sandy and said, "dye me some fiber that will spin up great as a fingering weight yarn."
So here is Calertne in three sizes and two yarns, one handspun and one commercial. My handspun is a two ply fingering weight short draw yarn spun from narrow strips of Sandy's beautifully dyed BFL/tussah silk fiber. Silk blends are really perfect for this yarn because it's so easy to spin them fine. You can find similar colorways at Woolgatherings. My choice of commercial sub is Malabrigo Finito, one of my very favorite new yarns. It is softer than soft, wonderful to knit, and comes in many beautiful colorways, several of them tonals.
Recommended needle size [always use a needle size that gives you the gauge listed
below -- every knitter's gauge is unique]
US #2/2.75mm needles for working in the round: DPNs, 1 long circular or 2 short circulars
2 stitch markers
flexible stitch holder or length of scrap yarn
28 sts/46 rows = 4 inches in stockinette stitch in the round
PATTERN NOTES [Knitty's list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here.]
Sizing & Adjusting
Since the desired length for each hand size is so variable and not always proportional to width, I have given instructions for an average length mitt, same for all three sizes. I have marked the areas where you may easily lengthen or shorten each section to fit your needs. If you aren't sure about lengths, try it on as you go.
LLI (left lifted increase): Insert tip of left-hand needle from front to back under left leg of stitch below the last st knitted, now on the right-hand needle. Lift this loop onto left-hand needle and knit into the back of the loop.
RLI: (right lifted increase): Insert tip of left-hand needle from back to front under right leg of stitch below the first st on left-hand needle. Lift this loop onto left-hand needle and knit into the front of the loop.
Pick up and purl: Put the tip of the right needle, from back to front, under both strands of the selvedge chain stitch of the shape from the previous round, wrap the yarn around as if to purl, and pull through a stitch.
Pick up and knit: Put the tip of the right needle, from front to back, under both strands of the selvedge chain stitch of the shape from the previous round, wrap the yarn around as if to knit, and pull through a stitch.
Entrelac in the round are worked in tiers of triangles and rectangles. Each individual triangle or rectangle shape is worked in rows, so you turn every time you complete a row just as you would in regular flat knitting. Knit rows are always on the RS of the work, purl rows always on the WS.
Working Entrelac with Magic Loop: an alternative method
Each time you finish a triangle or rectangle, pull your right hand needle through all the stitches before you loop the cable to begin the next shape in the round. Only keep the stitches on your left hand needle that you need to work the next shape. Place your loop between these stitches and the rest of the stitches in the round.
Cast on 56 [64, 72] sts. Distribute across needles as you prefer and join for working in the round.
Move to next st of round and work another triangle. Repeat triangles until 7[8, 9] have been worked.
After the final triangle is complete, work one more WS row as follows: Row 14 [WS]: Sl 1, p5. Do not turn.
Right Leaning Rectangle Tier:
*With WS facing, pick up and purl 6 sts into the edge of the block from the row below, using the slipped sts as a guide. Turn. Row 1 [RS]: K6, turn. Row 2 [WS]: Sl 1, p4, p2tog, turn. Row 3 [RS]: Sl 1, k5, turn.
Repeat Rows 2 & 3 4 more times, until you have encorporated all but one of the sts from the block in the tier below. Final row [WS]: Sl 1, p4, p2tog, do not turn.
Leaving the sts you just worked on your needle, work from * again 6[7, 8] more times around. After last rectangle, turn and work one additional row: Row 14 [RS]: Sl 1, k5. Do not turn.
Left Leaning Rectangle Tier:
*With RS facing, pick up and knit 6 sts into the edge of the block from the row below, using the slipped sts as a guide. Turn. Row 1 [WS]: P6, turn. Row 2 [RS]: Sl 1, k4, skp, turn. Row 3 [WS]: Sl 1, p5, turn.
Repeat Rows 2 & 3 4 more times, until you have encorporated all but one of the sts from the block in the tier below. Final row [RS]: Sl 1, k4, skp, do not turn.
Leaving the sts you just worked on your needle, work from * again 6[7, 8] more times around. After last rectangle, turn and work one additional row: Row 14 [WS]: Sl 1, p5. Do not turn.
Repeat Right Leaning Rectangle Tier and Left Leaning Rectangles Tier once more, and work the Right Leaning Rectange Tier again.
Finishing Triangle Tier:
This section restores the full round so that you can continue working in the round as usual for the rest of the mitten. Ensure you have just finished a Right Leaning Rectangle Tier.
*With RS facing, pick up and knit 6 sts into the edge of the block from the row below, using the slipped sts as a guide. Turn.
Repeat from * 6[7, 8] more times, until you have workrd across all the triangles in the round. You now have a regular round of 42[48, 54] sts.
Now you are back to knitting in the round.
Rnd 1: Knit, working wrapped sts together with their wraps to hide them. Rnd 2: [K1, p1] around. Rnd 3: [P1, k1] around. Rnds 4 & 5: Repeat Rnds 2 & 3. Rnds 6-8: Knit. Rnd 9: Skp, k to last 2 sts of rnd, k2tog. 40[46, 52] sts. Rnds 10-13: Repeat Rnds 6-9 once more. 38[44, 50] sts. Rnds 14-21: Knit. Note: to lengthen or shorten wrist, add or subtract rnds in this area.
Thumb Gusset Rnd 1: K1[1, 2], place marker A, k to last 1[1, 2] sts of rnd, place marker B, k1[1, 2]. Rnd 2: K to marker, RLI, slip marker, k to second marker, slip marker, LLI, k to end of round. 2 sts increased. Rnd 3: Knit.
Repeat Rnds 2 & 3 8 more times. 56[62, 68] sts, 20[20, 22] sts between the markers for thumb.
Knit 12 rounds. Divide for thumb: K to marker, slip sts between start of round and marker onto holder or scrap yarn, remove marker; k to second marker, remove marker, slip rem sts of round onto holder or scrap yarn.
Hand Next round: Cast on 2[4, 4] sts, k to end of round. 38[46, 50] sts.
Knit 16 rounds. Note: to lengthen or shorten hand, add or subtract rnds in this area.
Return thumb sts from holder to needles. With RS facing, rejoin yarn. Pickup and knit 6 over cast on edge of hand. Knit across thumb sts.
Distribute sts across needles as you prefer and join for working in the round. 26[26, 28] sts.
Rnd 1: Knit. Rnd 2: Ssk, k2, k2tog, k to end of round. 24[24, 26] sts. Rnd 3: Knit. Rnd 4: Ssk, k2tog, k to end of round. 22[22, 24] sts.
Knit 5 rounds. Note: to lengthen or shorten thumb add or subtract rnds in this area.
Work Edging as for Hand.
Weave in ends. Soak and gently block, taking care not to stretch ribbing. Allow to dry completely.
ABOUT THE DESIGNER
Sandy Sitzman passed the crown of Woolgatherings to her daughter-in-law Kate and lives happily ever after in her queendom in Oregon when she isn't flying off to Crete.
Lynne Vogel is spending a lot of time with her 13-year-old special-needs Australian Shepherd, Monk, and isn't going anywhere for a while.