Bernie Sanders' Mittens Crochet Sketch

February 06, 2021

Suddenly there were Bernie Sanders' mittens all over. What a joy and GREAT inspiration :) Like many other yarn geeks, I've tried to see if I could figure out the color pattern of the mittens.

I'm not sure, though I will make the actual mittens. However, I do have quite a detailed idea of HOW I would do it and maybe this could be of interest to you?

I would crochet in the round in waistcoat stitches (ws), so the mittens got the knitted feeling and would be as warm and cozy as they look at the photos of Bernie Sanders.

The Color Pattern

I had great fun making the color pattern. I used a drawing app on my iPad, that can do grids and layers, but I can also recommend StitchFiddle if you want to make your own stitch pattern and be sure your gauge works well.

Related blog post: From Image to Crochet Chart

Here is my green version of the color pattern. Choose whatever color you like.
Bernie Sanders mittens in green

Sketching Bernie Sanders Mittens

This is ONLY A SKETCH, but if you are interested in trying, you are welcome to use it. I will also gladly help you if you stumble upon something here, that you need help with.

Hook. Use a 5mm hook
Yarn. Stretchy wool yarn blend with yardage around 200m/50gr. Fingering (or possible Sport).

- - -
Foundation. Chain 30-42 to start with. A number divisible by 3. (Might need a swatch to test the gauge). Turn the chain row into a circle with a slip stitch. Work in a spiral.

Cuff ribbing. Crochet *2 ws, 1 ch* for several rows.

From cuff to hand. Waistcoat stitches only. Increase evenly in the first round (maybe two rounds). You will need a number of stitches divisible by 4 - plus 3 extra stitches (like 32+3=35).

Because. The color pattern is made of repeats of 4 stitches and the root of the thumb could require 3 stitches.

Make a couple of extra rounds. 2-4 rounds I think.

The Thumb
Below is how I would try to make the thumb. I would begin the colorwork right after starting the thumb part. So read both parts now.

Place two stitch markers with 3 stitches between them. The stitch markers mark the beginning and end of the hand. In between them is the thumb.

The middle stitch will be worked normally all the time. Increase when working into the other two stitches next to the stitch markers.

Increase at every second round or what works for you. Move the stitch markers up accordingly. Always increase in a stitch right next to the stitch marker and on the thumb-side of that stitch marker.

Once the base of the thumb is done, simply skip the thumb stitches and continue with the hand part (= skipping all the thumb stitches between the stitch markers).

Do the thumb-increase for something like 5cm (2inches).

Color Work
After initiating the thumb, I would start working on the color pattern as well. The stitch markers marking the thumb are placed in the first and last stitch of the hand. These are also the last and first stitches of the colorwork. So just pretend the thumb isn't there when you look at the color diagram.

Use a solid color for the thumb - or carry through the color from the color pattern.

Color Change Tips
Prepare a color change by changing yarn when you do the last YO-pull-through of a stitch. (Right before the visual color change).

Carry the un-used yarn color on the wrong side of the work or hide it by crocheting over it.

Finalizing the Hand

Carry on with the colorwork until you have about an inch left of the desired length of the mitten. Decrease on both sides at every round now.

Hopefully, you are now working with the dark color and don't have to figure out the colorwork at the same time.

Finalizing the Thumb
Crochet the rest of the thumb in any color. Work straight up till it is long enough and then decrease all the way around.

Would You like to Try?

Would you like to try? I'll be here to help you if you run into trouble. And who knows. Hubby asked for fingerless gloves long ago. One day, I might make him a pair using the color pattern above.

Have fun :)


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