Cuffed Hand Warmers

These Cuffed Hand Warmers tickle my fancy with their trompe l'oeil cuffs. As if the sleeves of a beautiful, cozy sweater were hanging down past your wrists, the effect is a refined kind of slouchy.

I love also the textural play of two yarns who, once strangers to each other, come together here in a beautiful friendship! A similar icy blue color may have been their conversation starter, but as the two yarns got chatting, they realized that what makes each different is also what makes each so special.

For the outer cuff I used Purl Soho's own gorgeous Super Soft Merino. As soft as a bunny rabbit's tail and as cozy as a featherbed, Super Soft Merino is bewitchingly lovable. And in the color Desert Sky it takes on a level of elegance that perfectly segues into Alchemy's Kozmos.

Kozmos is a complex brew of silk, mohair, wool and cotton. Lovingly hand dyed by the color mavericks of Alchemy, each skein tells a multi-layered story. And when a touch of enigmatic Kozmos pokes out from under the friendly comfort of Super Soft Merino things definitely get interesting!

If you'd like to play matchmaker with these two beauties, get started right here! -Whitney


The Materials

  • 1 skein of the Main Yarn: Purl Soho's Super Soft Merino, 100% merino wool. This color is Desert Sky.
  • 1 skein of the Contrast Yarn: Alchemy's Kozmos, 30% silk, 26% mohair, 15% wool, and 31% cotton. This color is Pale Blue Eyes.
  • Cotton thread to match the Main Yarn. A good choice for Super Soft Merino's Desert Sky, would be Gutermann's Cotton Thread #7670.


The Pattern


5 3/4 stitches = 1 inch in garter stitch with the Contast Yarn and the smallest needles

3 stitches = 1 inch in stockinette stitch with the Main Yarn and the largest needles

Finished Size

Hand Warmer: 7 inches around the palm, measured above the thumb and 8 1/3 inches around the palm, measured below the thumb

Cuff: 7 3/4 inches long


Knit the Hand Warmer

With the Contrast Yarn and the US #4 double pointed needles, cast on 48 stitches.

Place a marker (optional) and join for working in the round being careful to not twist the stitches. 

Round 1: Knit.

Round 2: Purl.

Repeat Rounds 1 and 2 until piece measures 2 3/4 inches from the cast on edge, ending with Round 2.

Next Round: K19, loosely bind off 10 stitches, k18. (38 stitches)

Next Round: P18, purl into the front and back (pfb), now pfb into the first stitch on the other side of the thumb hole, purl to the end of the round. (40 stitches)

Next Round: Knit.

Next Round: Purl.

Repeat the last two rounds until piece measures 4 3/4 inches from the cast on edge, ending with a purl round.

Bind off loosely in knit.

Weave in the ends.

Knit the Cuff

With the Main Yarn and the US #11 double pointed needles, cast on 28 stitches.

Place a marker (optional) and join for working in the round being careful to not twist the stitches.

Round 1: *K2, p2, repeat from * to end of round.

Repeat last round until piece measures 2 3/4 inches from the cast on edge.

Changing to the US #10 1/2 double pointed needles, repeat Round 1 one time.

With a removable stitch marker, safety pin or piece of scrap yarn, mark a stitch from the round right below the needles.

Continue to work in the 2 x 2 rib pattern until piece measures 7 3/4 inches from the cast on edge.

Bind off loosely in pattern (use the US #11 needle to bind off, if you like).

The cast on edge of the cuff is the top (palm-side) and the bind off edge is the bottom (wrist-side).

Weave in the ends.

Sew the Hand Warmer to the Cuff

Thread a piece of scrap yarn onto a tapestry needle and weave it through the round where the marked stitch is located.

Tuck the cast on edge of the hand warmer into the top of the cuff.

Roll up the bottom edge of the cuff...

...until you reveal the round marked by the scrap yarn.

Pull the bottom edge of the hand warmer up over the fold so it meets the scrap yarn round.

With the cotton thread and a sewing needle, sew the cast on edge of the hand warmer to the scrap yarn round of the cuff.

As you're attaching the two pieces, don't sew all the way through the Main Yarn of the cuff. Instead, push your needle through the middle of the yarn, across the knit stitches, like this:

And through the purl bumps, like this:

Once you've finished sewing the hand warmer to the cuff, remove the scrap yarn, turn your Cuffed Hand Warmer right side out and make another!

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10 Responses to Cuffed Hand Warmers

  1. CanadianJane says:

    As always, thank you so much for a lovely pattern and the inspiration to make something. Your projects made me take up knitting! Am ever grateful.

    Meanwhile, I would love to make these for a 5-yr old. Can you advise on the measurement modification?

    These are so perfect for Spring here in Canada where it can still feel a bit chilly into April…but not cold enough to keep us away from the playground! Thanks again.

  2. Wendy says:

    Although I've been knitting for several years I still don't love knitting on DPNs! I am pretty sure I could knit the inner cuff on 8″ size 4 circular needles, but am wondering if it would be possible to knit the outer cuff on 9″ circulars? I can't find a 8″ circular in sizes as large as 10.5 or 11.

    I eventually need to get over my fear of casting on on DPNs, but if the 9″ circulars would work for this project I'd probably do that instead… :-)

  3. Karen says:

    This is an excellent pattern! I haven't ever done mittens, so i don't know how to do thumbholes. That has kept me from trying the glovelette patterns. But, I can do this! I am so excited to give them a try. Thanks so much!

  4. purl bee says:

    Hi Wendy,

    I'd give it a try! I know that people who don't like double pointed needles can usually find a way to avoid them! Another option would be the magic loop method. Here's Knitting Help's video tutorial: .

    Thanks for asking and good luck!

  5. purl bee says:

    HI CanadianJane,

    For the hand warmer section, I'd measure around the 5-year old's palm above the thumb. Cast on that number times the gauge (5.75) and add 7 (for the thumb hole). So if the palm measures 6 inches x 5.75 = 34 + 7 = 41 stitches. For the thumb hole, bind off 7 stitches (I'm guessing).

    Then for the cuff, cast on about 58% of the stitches you used for the hand warmer, making sure the number is also divisible by 4. In this example where you cast on 41 stitches, 58% would be 23.78, or 24.

    For the lengths, you'll have to measure the lucky recipient!

    Thanks so much for your kind words and your question! And good luck!

  6. Amanda says:

    I was wondering if you would recommend a cheaper yarn to use to make these with that I could find at a local store. I really don't want to spend $30 on a skein.

  7. purl bee says:

    Hi Amanda-

    You are welcome to use any yarn that fits the gauge. We don't have any alternatives for the Super Soft Merino because it's the only yarn we carry in that gauge but for the Kosmos this silk and wool might be a good option:

    Thank you for your question!


  8. Betty says:

    I tried DPN and just could not like the way my knitting looked. So in checking comments and trying not to give up on this cute project, i saw the link for magic loop knitting. Thanks Whitney! This was much easier to grasp and my knitting looked great. I may try DPN knitting again…if I feel like a huge challenge is needed. It's so nice to know that there are options so we can't fail.

  9. Angie from MI says:

    Please help!!! I spent many days making the first steps and am now soooo confused!
    Any chance there's a video on how to do the beginning of the thumb?
    I'm really confused on how to proceed after doing the cuff up to 2 3/4 inches.
    I'm stuck at "next round: k19, loosely bind off 10, k18.
    I'm trying very hard not to give up because I made a special
    Trip to your cute store and really want to push myself and make these.
    Or…. Any chance the pattern can be adapted to straight instead of dpns- I feel so clumsy with them. Thx so much!!!!

  10. purl bee says:

    Hi Angie,

    Let's say you have 19 stitches on each of the three double pointed needles. You would knit all the stitches on the first needle, then knit the first 2 stitches of the second needle, pass the first stitch over the second (to bind off one stitch). Continue to knit one stitch and pass the first stitch over the second until you have bound off 10 stitches (or until 19 stitches remain, including the one on the right needle). Then knit 18 stitches to the end of the round.

    If this is still confusing and you want to try a method that doesn't involve double pointed needles, you might like the "magic loop" technique. Here's Knitting Help's video tutorial: .

    Thanks for your questions and please let us know if you have more!


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