Thandi African Fingerless Gloves by Sally Cameron

Thandi African Fingerless Gloves

October 2014
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
30 stitches and 43 rows = 4 inches
in stocking stitch blocked
US 2 - 2.75 mm
107 - 178 yards (98 - 163 m)
S, M, L and XL
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Thandi forms part of my Mzansi - South Africa on my Needles collection, available as a stand alone pattern, an Ebook and Print book. More details can be found

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This pattern has been Tech Edited by Martha Jane McLellan

Beads and beaded art is very common in South Africa. From jewellery to Christmas decorations, animals to key rings, beads and bead artists can be found selling their wares at markets, shops, informal stalls and tourist attractions. I wanted to design some fingerless gloves that honour this tradition. The African series of gloves are all inspired by beading that I have seen and adapted for knitting.

The names for the 3 African Fingerless Mittens series come from growing up in the old Bophuthatswana. My dad was a doctor at a rural hospital where the nurse gave me and my 2 sisters special African name. My African name is Mapula, which means rain, as rain is as blessing in the often dry Africa. My older sister Jenni’s African name is Thandi, which mean blessed. My younger sister Sarah’s African name is Gape, which means another one, for another girl, I thought the design of a girl was very fitting.


These fingerless gloves are knitted in the round using magic loop, DPNs or two circular needles. They have a ribbed cuff and a bold geometric design. The gusseted thumb is set slightly to the inside of the hand to match the normal anatomical position of the thumb. Optional short rows across the hand to lengthen the fingerless gloves across the 3 taller fingers but not across the little finger, finished off with a corrugated rib on top.

Difficulty Level: Beginner/Intermediate
If you choose to knit these gloves and add all the colours on afterwards with duplicate stitch then they are very simple beginner gloves . If you want to knit the colour blocks as you go then you need to do intarsia in the round with multiple colours per row. This will require some previous knowledge of colourwork or some patience and tenacity.

Skills Needed:
Knitting in the round, intarsia in the round (optional), short rows (optional) swiss darning / duplicate stitch. Stranded knitting. Reading colour chart.

2.75mm/US 2 circular needles at least 80cm/48“ long

Fingering weight/sock weight superwash Merino I used ColourSpun Sock Wool (50g; 163m/178yds)
Main Colour: Black 30–50g (98m/107yd – 163m/178yd) Colour A: Green 5–10g (17m/18yd – 33m/36yd) Colour B: Red 5–10g (17m/18yd – 33m/36yd)
Colour C: Royal Blue 5–10g (17m/18yd – 33m/36yd) Colour D: Yellow 5–10g (17m/18yd – 33m/36yd) Colour E: White 5–10g (17m/18yd – 35m/36yd)

Tapestry Needle
Stitch Markers
Scrap Yarn

Stocking stitch: 30 stitches and 43 rows over 10cm/4“ blocked

S (M, L, XL)