African Fingerless Mittens

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 beading samples for the book were done by Dorothy and some ladies in her community. This is her story (Shared with permission and in her own words. English is not her first language)

I am Dorothy Moni Makgalatiba, born 1978 July 10. I live in a small urban area called Rethabiseng. I live with my two boys and in an RDP (Reconstruction and Development Program) house.
Years back I discovered that I was HIV positive and I was devastated and refused to believe that I am HIV, my mom knew nothing about it and I kept it to myself for 2 years.

But fate decided that I was not going to keep this to myself anymore,so my son got very sick and my mom found out about it as she saw a Dr’s letter so I had no where to run anymore. And now my son is on ARV and life is not all roses for us as we struggle with his our diet need more vegies fruits and more to keep us healthy as I really want to see him graduate and be something big or even be a Pilot as that is his dream. That I am willing to move mountains to see come true no matter how hard it is.
In my life if I doesn’t rain it pours!!

An old woman was doing beads work next door to my house and I was very much interested in knowing how to do bead work, then I learned how do it and I was selling my bead work to anyone who needed something done with bead.
I know work with a very brilliant lady her name is Maria Mabena and we both love beads and we enjoy doing them but our product is stuck because we depend on people buying from us.
Love
Dorothy (nick name ngoana, meaning a small baby)

The names for this 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.


Mapula

Description
These fingerless gloves are knit in the round using magic loop, DPNs or two circular needles. They have a rolled and then ribbed cuff. A section of stranded colour work . 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.

Please note purchase is for the PDF pattern to knit the Mapula African Fingerless Gloves and not for the finished item!!

Purchase through Ravelry $5

Purchase through PayFast (South Africa) R50
Buy


Thandi

Description
These fingerless gloves are knit 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.

Please note purchase is for the PDF pattern to knit the Thandi African Fingerless Gloves and not for the finished item!!

Purchase through Ravelry $5

Purchase through PayFast (South Africa) R50

Buy


Gape

Description
These fingerless gloves are knit in the round using magic loop, DPNs or two circular needles. They have a pretty picot cuff . 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. The little girl figure is added with duplicate stitch afterwards

Please note purchase is for the PDF pattern to knit the Gape African Fingerless Gloves and not for the finished item!!

Purchase through Ravelry $5

Purchase through PayFast (South Africa) R50

Buy


 

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