Saturday, November 1, 2014

Donalda Gilchrist Samhain Mitts --- Starz Outlander Inspired

Donalda Gilchrist Samhain Fingerless Mitts

If you need help with the pattern repeat, you might find this video helpful.

These mitts are worked flat and then later seamed or joined provisionally. Keep in mind the cables are worked vertically and then the fabric is seamed/joined horizontally in order to duplicate Donalda’s mitts on Starz' Outlander.

Size: Women’s Medium (my hands measure at 7 inches around the knuckles)

Finished dimensions before seaming:  7 inches wide, 7 inches long

Us 5 / 3.75 mm

Knitpicks Wool of the Andes  -  2 skeins at 50g /110 yds each (these are done in color Wheat)

Note: 1 skein *might* be enough if doing both provisionally. Mitt pair weighs 55 grams, but the one done with provisional is 25g. The seamed one is 30g.

Either do with provisional or cast on regular to seam later on. (I made one mitt with a seam, the other provisionally)

Sl = slip
Wyif = with yarn in front
Wyib = with yarn in back
K = knit
P = purl

For the mini cables - I liked doing a shortcut so I don't have to use cable needle (see my video), or you can also do them as follows:

C1B = cable 1 back: slip st to cable needle & hold in back of work,
k off left needle, k st off cable needle.

C1F = cable 1 front: slip st to cable needle & hold in front of work,
k st off left needle, k  off cable needle.

Cast on 52.
Row 1 (RS):  Sl 1 wyif, *P2, K1, Sl 2 purlwise wyib, K1*, until 3 sts left. P2, K1.
Row 2 (WS): Sl 1 wyif, *K2, P1, Sl 2 purlwise wyif, P1*, until 3 sts left. K3.
Row 3(RS): Sl 1 wyif, *P2, C1B, C1F*, until 3 sts left. P2, K1.
Row 4(WS): Sl 1 wyif, *K2, P4*, until 3 sts left. K3.

Dont' be worried if your work is all crinkly at first. The bottom edge of this pattern will do that. All will be well. See how crinkly mine is here - the blue is waste yarn for my provisional.

Continue until 7 inches tall (or whatever length you need to fit comfortably around your hand), ending with a Row 4. Then bind off or prepare for provisional join.

Figure out where you want your thumbhole to be. (see pic). I placed mine about 2 inches in from the edge, for a length of 2 ¼  inches. Use removable markers or pins to keep your fabric lined up, matching the cables.

For seaming, I used mattress stitch.

For provisional, I used the crochet chain cast on, and then grafted the join with Kitchener  up to the thumbhole where I then used a crochet hook to bind off the live thumbhole stitches (if you know of an easier way to bind off stitches without working yarn, I’m all ears), then did Kitchener down the rest of the mitt.

Weave in ends, repeat for your 2nd mitt.

 (Please, Donalda, don't wear these while you are waulking wool. )


  1. Way cool!!! I have an idea about what to do with those thumbhole stitches. I think I will use those live stitches to knit a bit of a thumb for the mitt. Probably will just do stockinette as a cable would probably be too bulky on the thumb and also too difficult for such a small circle. Thoughts?

    Rebekah Hedstrom

    1. i think thats a great idea, rebekah!! i can't think of a reason why that wouldnt work, and stockinette sounds good, or maybe reverse stockinette to match the background of the cables. if you give it a try, i would love to hear how it works out. the pattern is on ravelry if you are on there ---- best wishes---

  2. Hi Polly! As a big Outlander fan, I am looking for some hand with the small shrug Claire is wearing when she goes along with the Boar hunting. Do you have any ideas where I can find a pattern that resembles this shrug? My mother syas it is called a chickencloth here in Holland. Because women used to wear it when feeding the chicken of gathering the eggs. Maybe it is called the same in English?

    1. this style of garment is often called "capelet" (as in 'a little cape'). I didn't know about 'chickencloth' - nice to hear of a different name! :) here is a free crochet pattern:

      if you do search for "outlander boar hunt capelet" you will find a few nice knitted ones. I could not find a free knit pattern but you may have better luck.

      happy crafting!

  3. Hi Donna, my knitting isn't looking anything like yours. I've got nice ridges, but no clear cable patterning. I took a photo - is there a way to email it to you in the chance you might see what I'm doing wrong?