Hi everyone! I was planning to cover my stitch dictionary this week, but as the Kili Scalemail Gauntlets pattern has just been made available for purchase, I thought I would write up my experiences testing the pattern. Enjoy!
Back in February, I was browsing the Free Pattern Testers forum on Ravelry and I found a test for the Kili Scalemail Gauntlets. I had seen designer Sheila Toy Stromberg’s patterns before, particularly the Gimli son of Gloin Gauntlets. I admired her work, so I couldn’t pass up the chance to test a new design! I had some Malabrigo Merino Worsted in Paris Night in stash that was waiting for a special project like this. After receiving the pattern, I ordered new needles – KnitPro Zing 4.5mm with a 100cm cable for working Magic Loop. I bought the scales, which are small anodised aluminium scales, from Beadsisters ordering equal amounts of blue and matt silver. I also realised after finishing the test that I had inadvertently bought Leicester City colours!
The pattern is very clear and well laid out, with several options of gloves to choose from – fully enclosed fingers, three enclosed fingers on either hand or fingerless mitts. After casting on, I was a little nervous about the scalemail technique as it’s something I’ve never done before. However, the pattern includes a link to a very clear video tutorial so there’s no need to be nervous! Knitted scalemail can be a little fiddly when you’re first learning it, but I promise it gets easier once you get the hang of it.
When I was working the scale, I managed to put all of the scales on backwards at first (that’s what you get for learning a new technique late at night!). Once I restarted, cursing a bit, I had the technique down after a couple of scale rounds. After that, the scale section was smooth and I only ripped back to tweak how I’d placed the scales.
After the scale section, there is a cable pattern on the top of the hand. It had been quite a while since I’d done cables, but again the different cables were all explained and easy to understand. I pretty much flew through that section once I’d got used to manoeuvring a cable needle again – I normally cable without a cable needle, but as the scales make the work heavy I didn’t want to risk dropping any stitches!
I made was the fingerless glove first and I finished that up quickly before moving onto the aysmmetrical glove. The second glove went much faster as I was more confident using both the scales and the cable needle. The fingers were also clearly explained – I’ve never done fingers before and I had no problems with them.
Another thing I like about the Kili Scalemail Gauntlets is the fit – it’s incredible. My gloves are medium size to suit my 7 1/2″ palm and the cast-on looked small, the fit is perfect. There is a large range of sizes to choose from, so you should find something that will fit you.
I had a great time doing this test knit! I used approximately 95 grams of Malabrigo Merino Worsted and 392 scales in total for long gauntlets. The Malabrigo yarn turned out to be as wonderful to work with as it is to look at and squish! This was my first time using Malabrigo and I now see what all the fuss is about! Also, the yarn easily had the strength to hold its shape under the added weight of the scales. The scales have a lovely sheen that complements the yarn well, they are also great to work with. (I turned my extra scales into earrings which you can see here).
The length of the scale section is flexible so you can use more or fewer scales depending on your preference. This project ended up costing more than usual, about £30, in all but it was completely worth it! I highly recommend this awesome pattern to anyone looking for something a little different. I reckon it would be great for LARPers and cosplayers too!
The Kili Scalemail Gauntlets pattern is available for $6 on Ravelry.