Knitty: little purls of wisdom
beauty shot

The smell of wood burning, the crunch of leaves under your feet, and a chill in the air...all welcome signs of autumn. These mittens are cozy companions for any outdoor adventure a fall day could bring.

My inspiration came from summer hikes through the Catskill region of New York. I found myself wanting a pair of rustic but chic mittens that could be stuffed in a backpack or coat pocket for fall hiking or an urban adventure.

Briar Mittens feature a simple but intriguing ombre technique and a long gauntlet, which can be either worn long or scrunched up at a jacket cuff. I wanted to make mittens that were easy and fun to knit. The ombre is simple but keeps the project interesting all the way to the fingertips.

By using one of my favorite yarns, soft and tweedy Loft by Brooklyn Tweed, the project remains enticing to the end. The palette of Loft has seemingly endless color combinations, making the most challenging part of this project choosing your colors! As a bonus, there is more than enough left over from each skein to make a hat or even another set of mittens for a jealous friend.

I can't wait until the weather turns to chilly again so I can sit by the bonfire at night with my mittens and favorite drink.

spacer model: Rebecca Sussman, Chris Gallagher
spacer photos: Meghan Babin

Women's Small[Medium, Large]
Sample shown in Small

Hand circumference: 7[7.5, 8.5] inches
Cuff circumference: 9.5[10.25, 11] inches
Length: 14.75 inches



Brooklyn Tweed LOFT [100% Targhee-Columbia Wool; 275 yds/252 m per 50g skein]
spacer [A] Hayloft; 1 skein
spacer [B] Meteorite; 1 skein
spacer [C] Old World; 1 skein

Recommended needle size
[always use a needle size that gives you the gauge listed below -- every knitter's gauge is unique]
spacer 1 set of US #3/3.25 mm needles for working a small circumference in the round

spacer stitch markers
spacer waste yarn
spacer yarn needle



20 sts/28 rounds = 4" in stockinette stitch

[Knitty's list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here.]

Ombre Pattern Rotation
1. Two strands of color A held together for 28 rounds.
2. One strand of A and one stand of B held together for 28 rounds.
3. Two strands of color B held together for 28 rounds.
4. One strand of color B and one strand of color C held together for 28 rounds.
5. Two strands of color C held together for 28 rounds.
6. One strand of color C and one strand of color A held together for 28 rounds.
Repeat 1-6 for rotation.

With two strands of color A held together, CO 48[52, 56] sts. Distribute sts across needles as you prefer and join for working the round.

Note: Follow Ombre Pattern Rotation throughout pattern.

Rounds 1-6: Knit around.
Round 7: K1, k2tog, k to 3 sts before end of round, ssk, k1. 2 sts decreased.
Repeat Rounds 1-7 6 more times. 34[38, 42] sts rem.
Knit 14 rounds.

Round 1, Right Mitten only: K4, pm, M1R, k1, M1L, pm, k to end of round. 36[40, 44] sts

Round 1, Left Mitten only: K until 5 sts rem, pm, M1R, k1, M1L, pm, k to end of round. 36[40, 44] sts.

Rounds 2 & 3: Knit

Round 4: K to first marker, sm, M1R, k to marker, M1L, sm, k to EOR.

Repeat Rounds 2-4 5 times more. 48[52, 56] sts; 15 thumb sts.

Knit 2 rounds.

Next round, divide for thumb: K to first marker, remove marker, slip next 15 sts to waste yarn, remove marker, k to end of round.
Next round, rejoin round: K to gap, using backwards loop method, CO 1 st over gap and knit to end of round. 34[38, 42] sts.

Continue even in Ombre pattern until piece measures 1 inch short of desired hand length.

Round 1: [K2tog, k4, ssk, k1, k2tog, k4, ssk] twice. 26[30, 34] sts.

Rounds 2, 4 and 6: knit.

Round 3: [K2tog, k2, ssk, k1, k2tog, k2, ssk] twice. 18[22, 26] sts.

Round 5: [K2tog, ssk, k1, k2tog, ssk] twice. 10[14, 18] sts.

Round 7: K2tog around. 5[7, 9] sts.
Break yarn leaving a 6" tail and draw through remaining sts securing on the inside of mitten.

Return held thumb sts from waste yarn to needles.

With RS facing, rejoin yarn at crook of thumb and pick up and knit 5 sts in the gap. 20 sts total. Distribute sts across your needles and join for working in the round.

Setup round 1: Knit to 1 st before 1st picked up st and k2tog, k1. This is the new start of round

Setup round 2: K2, k2tog; k end of round. 18 sts.

Knit even in Ombre pattern until thumb is a quarter inch short of desired finished length.

Decrease round 1: [K2tog, k1] around. 12 sts.

Decrease round 2: K2tog 5 times. 6 sts.

Break yarn leaving a 6-inch tail and draw through remaining sts securing on the inside of thumb.


Block and weave in ends.


Meghan works at the Cornwall Yarn Shop in Cornwall, NY. The shop is her muse, and her work provides her with endless inspiration. She began by designing knitwear for the shop, and later for herself and her family. She's now so full of design ideas that they're tumbling out into the world, and she's thrilled to be sharing them with other passionate knitters.

She can be found on Ravelry and Tumblr as meggospurls.