Learn to Knit : Whānau Fingerless Gloves

Simple stitches and cozy New Zealand merino and possum yarn pair together to create gloves that are perfect for (and easily knitted by) the whole family.

Written by Emma 

As I knit these gloves my mind wanders to my whānau - each stitch evoking fond memories of crisp winter days walking hand in hand with my little ones; trapping possums with my brother as a kid; and of time spent knitting with my Grandma.  I remember watching in awe as she deftly manoeuvred two long knitting needles to transform balls of yarn into socks, jumpers and blankets.  Made with hands that bore all the marks of a life well lived, always caring for her family with love.  She soon shared her ‘magic’ with me and it was a complete joy - I too could conjure up something out of nothing!  I am so delighted that joy has never faded and in turn I can pass it on.

I designed these gloves to be easily accessible to all - perfect for absolute beginners or as a quick knit for more advanced knitters. Knit them for yourself or as a simple but heartfelt gift, or use them to teach someone else.  In the instructions below, you will find links to instructional videos for knitting techiniques.

I’ve used soft, plump New Zealand merino and possum yarn that keeps the chill at bay while also helping to protect our native bush - one stitch at a time.  

Choose from two sizes that will fit most adult or school age child hands. If you want to alter the size simply cast on a few more or a few less stitches and/or knit them a little longer or shorter - it really is that easy!  

(note: we don’t recommend using possum yarn for babies as there is a chance the possum fur can shed and cause breathing difficulties if accidentally inhaled)



Sizes: Small (Large)

Finished Measurements: 15.5cm around x 16cm long (18.5cm around x 18cm long)

Yarn: 30(40)g of Miss Maude Paihamu 8ply Merino/Possum
Gauge:  17 stitches x 25 rows = 10cm

Suggested Needles: 5mm/US8 , straight or circular



Garter Stitch Lower Edge:

Cast on 26(32) stitches.  
Knit 5 rows 

Main Body:

Row 1: Knit 3 stitches, Purl 20(26) stitches, Knit 3 stitches
Row 2: Knit 26(32) stitches

How to Purl Stitch (p) knitting video tutorial

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 until your knitting measures 14cm(17)cm from your cast on edge. 

Garter Stitch Upper Cuff:

Knit 5 rows
Cast off, leaving a long tail of yarn (approx 60cm), you will use this to sew up your gloves


Soak thoroughly in tepid water, gently squeeze out excess water, stretch into an even rectangle shape, and leave to dry flat. 

Sew sides together: 

Fold your knitted rectangle in half lengthways, with wrong sides together.  Starting at the top edge of your gloves (where you cast off), whip stitch down the side seam.  Picking up one stitch on each side of the glove secure the beginning of your seam. 

Continue down the side seam until you have sewn 3(4)cm. Secure your stitches. 

Discreetly weave the yarn in and out of one side only of the seam.  Do this for 4(5)cm to create the thumb hole. Secure your stitches.

Recommence whip stitch to sew the remainder of the side seam.  Secure and weave in ends. 

Repeat this for the second glove - this pattern is not handed, so making two exactly the same will give you a warm and cozy pair of fingerless gloves for winter!

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