Beat the chills – knitted wrist warmers pattern

Winter knitted wrist warmers pattern and instructions

If we can’t jet off to some snowy mountain peaks this winter, we can at least knit our own. There’s something of the après ski feel to these fun, knitted wrist warmers – we’re picturing ourselves wearing them while sat in a wooden alpine chalet, sipping on eggnog and eating Christmas biscuits. 

They were kindly designed by the amazing Anna Wilkinson who is the author of two knit and crochet pattern books. So don’t worry, she’s a pro! Make sure you check out her Instagram (and ours for that matter) for more knitting inspiration.

Make your knitted wrist warmers

They’re knitted in the round, so no sewing up at the end. Play around with colour and use up scraps of DK yarn to give a ramshackle patchwork feel, and add lurex to the peaks for a ‘freshly fallen’ look.

This pattern is written in the round using double pointed sock needles with the working yarns carried around the inside of the work using fair isle or stranded technique (see box, above right, for more detail on how to do this.) This will add a little thickness and insulation to the knitting. However, you may choose instead to knit them on a pair of needles, working backwards and forwards rather than in the round. If you choose to knit them this way you could still use the fair isle technique, or you could use intarsia.


  • Jamieson’s DK, 100% Shetland wool, 25g/75m per ball: one ball each in Bluebell (665) (Colour A), Lagoon (660) (Colour B) and China Blue (655) (Colour C)
  • Rowan Pure Superwash Wool DK, 100% Wool, 50g/130m per ball, one in Snow (012) (Colour D)
  • Rico Design Essentials Merino DK, 100%  Merino, 50g/120m, one ball in Silver Grey (98) (Colour E)
  • Set of five 3.25mm (UK 10/US 3) double pointed sock needles (or circular needles)
  • Set of five 3.75mm (UK 9/ US 5) double pointed sock needles (or circular needles)
  • Stitch marker
  • Tapestry needle


24 sts and 32 rows to 10cm (4″) measured over

Abbreviations (UK)

st(s) stitch(es)

k knit

p purl

st st stocking st: if knitting on dpns
or circular needles knit all rounds; if knitting on straight needles – knit one row, purl one row repeated

Finished size

10 x 19cm (4 x 7 1/2″)

The fair isle technique

Hand warmers technique step by step

The fair isle (or stranded knitting) technique is a way of working two or more colours of yarn in the same row. Normally the colour changes are close together and you can simply carry the yarn you aren’t knitting with across the back (wrong side) of your work as you go. It’s best and easiest to work this in the round, although it’s possible to do it in straight rows.

When changing to a new colour, it’s best to bring the new yarn from underneath the one you just finished working with. Also, try to maintain an even tension, and when changing yarn don’t pull the new yarn too tight. When working fair isle or stranded knitting you must follow the chart (left). Each square shows the colour of yarn to use for a stitch. 
Charts read from right to left and from bottom upwards.

As with anything new, a little practice helps.

Knitted mountain wrist warmer pattern

Left hand wrist warmer

Firstly, using 3.25mm needles and Colour A, cast on 50 sts arranging evenly across 4 needles (12 on first, 13 on second, 12 on third, and 13 on fourth).

Round 1 Joining cast on row into the round (ensure that your knitting doesn’t get twisted): *k1, p1; repeat from * to end of round. Now mark the end of your round with a stitch marker. Repeat Round 1 (to form 1×1 rib at the bottom of your wrist warmers) until your work measures 5cm (2″) from cast on edge.

Change to size 3.75mm needles and begin working from the pattern chart (above left) now, working in stocking stitch, work from right to left on the chart as you work each round and carry all working colour yarns around the back of the work using fair isle technique. Continue working through the chart until you finish Round 20. **

Thumb hole shaping:

Round 21 k21 in pattern, cast off the next 4 sts, work to end of round.

Round 22 Work in pattern to cast off sts, turn, cast on 4 sts, turn, work to end of round.

Continue working in chart pattern to end of chart. Now cast off.

Right hand wrist warmer

Work as left hand wrist warmer until **

Thumb hole shaping:

Round 21 k25 in pattern, cast off the next 4 sts, work to end of round.

Round 22 Work in pattern to cast off stitches, turn, cast on 4 sts, turn, work to end of round.

Lastly, continue working in chart pattern to end of chart and cast off.


Finally, weave in any ends to the inside of the wrist warmer. To neaten up the thumb holes, stitch around the outside with a simple embroidery stitch such as blanket stitch. Slip-on, and venture outside for snowy adventures.

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