I've knit lots of hand warmers for the Purl Bee, but this is actually the first time I've crocheted a pair. What an oversight! The tight, durable fabric created out of single crochets is the perfect cold weather defense. Plus, there's a looseness and spontaneity to crocheting that I love. To embrace this freedom, I decided to follow my fancy with some no-sense striping, a bit of pink here, a dash of olive there, color everywhere!
And with Koigu's new KPM Needlepoint yarn all of this striping is actually possible without breaking the bank. Each mini skeins is 11 yards and only a few dollars, so you can indulge in all sorts of whimsical color play and creative experimentation. With over a hundred colors to choose from, treat yourself to a cozy afternoon with whatever colors are on your mind!
- 1 skein of Koigu's KPM, 100% Merino Wool. This color is #2390.5.
- 7 skeins of Koigu's KPM Needlepoint Yarn, 100% Merino Wool. From the top, I used one skein of #0, two skeins of #2100, and one skein of each of the following: #2335, #2200, #1155, and #1110. In the pattern I call these colors: WHITE, YELLOW, OLIVE, ORANGE, PINK, and RUST.
- A size D crochet hook.
NOTES ON THE MATERIALS:
- To make a pair of basic hand warmers without stripes you only need one skein of the KPM. You could also use 1 skein of the KPM Needlepoint Yarn to crochet the hand warmers together with a contrasting color.
- To create your own stripe patterns keep in mind that each skein of KPM Needlepoint Yarn makes 7 rows as long as you don't cut extravagant tails. Keep them about 2 inches long to be on the safe side.
7 3/4 single crochets = 1 inch
6 1/2 inches in circumference, unstretched, and stretching to up to 8 inches in circumference.
6 3/4 inches long.
The Basic Pattern
Foundation Row: Chain 51 stitches. Inserting hook into 2nd chain from hook...
...make 1 sc into next 50 chain stitches.
Turn the work.
Row 1: Ch 1, insert hook into 2nd stitch from hook...
...and make 1 sc into next 50 stitches, making the last sc into the ch from the previous row.
Repeat Row 1 until piece measures 6 1/4 inches from the Foundation Row.
Cut the yarn and pull it through the last stitch. If you didn't weave in the ends as you crocheted, you can do it now.
Make a second piece just like this one.
If you'd like to follow the stripe sequences exactly as I did them, here they are. (Remember to leave short 2 inch tails so that you'll have enough yarn for all these stripes! Also, you'll save yourself a lot of trouble if you crochet over the ends as you work rather than weaving them all in at the end.)
Each side will look slightly different. Here's my preferred side of Hand Warmer #1 (the Foundation Row is at the bottom of the photo):
And here's Hand Warmer #2:
How to Change Colors
To change colors, crochet to the last stitch on the row. Start the last stitch by inserting the hook into the chain from the previous row and pulling a loop through.
Now, with the new color, finish the single crochet by bringing a loop through the 2 stitches on the hook.
Turn the work and continue with a chain 1.
How to Crochet the Hand Warmers Together
Choose your favorite side of the hand warmer and also choose the yarn you want to use as the edging.
With your preferred side facing you, insert the hook into the top right corner. Chain 1 and make a sc into the same space. Then make 45 more single crochets across this side of the work.
Connect the end of this row with the beginning by making a single crochet into the first stitch of the row.
Now crochet the two sides of the hand warmer together. Insert your hook through both layers of the fabric and make 22 single crochets up the side (3 inches).
Start the thumbhole by making 18 single crochets (2 1/2 inches) along just the layer of the hand warmer that is closest to you.
Connect the two sides by making a single crochet in the same place as the last single crochet and also through the other side of the hand warmer, making sure that you line up the corners of the fabric as you do this.
Turn so the other side of the hand warmer is facing you.
Make 18 single crochets along this second side of the thumbhole.
Cut the yarn, pull it through the last stitch, and use the tail to sew closed the gap at the bottom of the thumbhole.
Now rejoin the yarn at the top of the thumbhole by inserting the hook through both layers of fabric. Chain 1 and make a single crochet into the same space. Connect the two layers by making 10 more single crochets to the end of the row.
Complete the hand warmer by making 46 single crochets around the remaining edge. Cut the yarn and pull it through the remaining stitch. Use the tails to close any gaps in the edging and weave in whatever tails remain.
Crochet the second hand warmer together in the same way and you're all done!