How to Make and Insert Thrums

A flock of finished thrums

Thrums might sound like something that’s hard to make, but they’re not.  You do need to be a secure knitter who has the dexterity down for knitting in general.  If you’ve knit a hat in the round, you can absolutely handle any project that uses thrums.

Hey Knitters! Here's How to Make and Insert Thrums

There are different ways to make thrums.  Go look it up!  This is the way I like to do it.  In my opinion, this technique makes thrums that won’t easily come undone or lose fibers, and — when done right — is not too bulky.

Picture Tutorial on How to Make Thrums

Combed top makes fantastic thrums
1. Fluff out one end of the combed top

 

Pull out a small piece of combed top to make a thrum
2. Pull out a slender piece of combed top to begin shaping your thrum
At first the combed top will be too thick for a thrum
3. That piece of combed top will be too thick to make a thrum
Strip down the combed top to get a small piece for making a thrum
4. Strip down the combed top one or more times to get a thinner piece for making a thrum. Go thinner than you think — all that fluff adds up inside your project.
This wispy piece of combed top is see-through, especially at the ends
5. This wispy piece of combed top is see-through, especially at the ends
Pull the thrum at either end so that is is evenly see through from top to bottom
6. Gently pull the thrum from either end until it is evenly see through from top to bottom
Fold up the ends of the thrum to meet in the middle
7. Fold up the ends of the thrum to meet in the middle
Pinch the thrum in the middle and rub with your fingers to felt it into a bow shape
8. Pinch the thrum in the middle and rub with your fingers to felt it into a bow shape
This is what a finished thrum looks like!
9. This is what a finished thrum looks like!

Picture Tutorial on How to Insert Thrums

To add thrum to project, insert right needle into row below
10. To add a thrum to your project, insert the right needle into the row below
Wrap thrum instead of yarn over right needle, in the back
11. Wrap thrum instead of yarn over right needle, in the back
Pull thrum through stitch in the row below
12. Pull thrum through stitch in the row below
Insert right needle into stitch above where thrum was inserted
13. Insert right needle into stitch above where thrum was inserted
Stitch is knit! Next you will jump thrum over this stitch.
14. Stitch is knit! Next you will jump thrum over this stitch
After you jump thrum over stitch on the left, it is seated tidily into its new home
15. After you jump thrum over stitch on the left, it is seated tidily into its new home. Gently tug it in the back if you think it needs to be evened up.
Ta da! That's a thrum done
16. Ta da! That’s a thrum done

So sally forth and make some mittens!  Check out my Warm Paws pattern on Ravelry.  Thrummed mittens make an impressive gift without being impressively difficult to make.

Or maybe you’re an overachiever like me and want to take to the next level.  Thrums are also great inside hats and slippers!  If those ideas make your heart go pitter patter, be the boss and figure it out.

Get thee gone and knit!

Warm Paws Thrummed Mittens Pattern

Inside the Warm Paws thrummed mittens

Warm Paws is an easy to follow knitting pattern for making thrummed mittens.  What are thrummed mittens?  I’m so glad you asked!

Warm Paws Thrummed Mittens pattern

The term originally comes from weaving, where thrums are the leftover warp on the loom after a project has been cut off.  What to do with all that leftover yarn??

Thrums are traditionally loom waste

For knitters, thrums are tufts of wool knit into your project to create a warm, fleecy lining.  Thrums are great for mittens, slippers, hats, and headbands.  At first your mittens (or whatever you choose to make) will be really puffy, but, with use, the air is pressed out of the tufts of wool and you’re left with windproof, insulated mittens.

Inside the Warm Paws thrummed mittens

Materials for Your Thrummed Mittens

To make these mittens, you need about 200 yards of worsted weight wool and about 2 oz of unspun wool.

Materials for knitting thrums

Combed top is the easiest to work with — that’s the really smooth fiber preparation that is often sold in beautiful multicolored braids.

Hand painted combed top for making thrums

Roving will work too, if you want to use what you have around the house.  Because the fiber prep for roving is intentionally disorganized (for making woolen-spun yarn), it can be a bit more challenging to control, but I have done it and it’s not so hard that it’s not worth trying.

Wool roving can be used to make thrums

I also know someone who used a two-ply bulky yarn and cut it into short lengths to use for thrums.  She still wears those mittens, so it must have worked!

The pattern calls for US 6 and US 8 needles, but your mileage may vary depending on whether you’re a tight knitter or a loose knitter or winging it with something other than worsted weight yarn.

Heard enough?  You can buy the Warm Paws Thrummed Mittens pattern for $5 through Ravelry.

button to buy now

Warm Paws Thrummed Mittens in progress

Great Lakes Fiber News for January & February 2018

Learn to knit with these simple fingerless mitts

Great Lakes Fiber News January 2018

Here are the fiber events happening in the Great Lakes region in January and February.  This is not an exhaustive list!  If you have fiber news for the Great Lakes region that you’d like to share, click here to tell me about it.

Shawl Knit-a-Long at The Yarn Stop

Saturday January 6 — Saturday February 10, 2018

The Yarn Stop
25 S Main St, Clawson, MI 48017
The Yarn Stop in Clawson, Michigan, is hosting a KAL to make a beautiful shawl.  There are prizes!  You can register on the website; yarn must be purchased at The Yarn Stop.

Cascades Trunk Show by Quince & Co

Monday January 8 – Monday January 22, 2018

Yarn Harbor
4629 E. Superior St, Duluth, MN 55804
“The Cascades Trunk Show by Quince arrives on January 8 and runs until the 22nd.  This Pacific Northwest inspired palette is a showcase of five knits in Quince’s arresting blue hues, from darkest Slate to pale Mist.”

Yarn Party Pop Up

Friday January 12, 2018, 12pm-7pm

Streetkitchen
2722 E Michigan Ave, Lansing, MI 48912
“Yarn Party is a combination of trunk show, stitch n bitch, and demonstrations hosted by Icemelon’s Stash, V Yarns, Mint Rain hand dyed yarns, Anomalous Mind, and Chasing Acorns. The fabulous Lexy Carl will be teaching mini workshops on how to make your own spindle and how to spin yarn as well!”

Spinner's Flock guild meeting

Spinner’s Flock January Guild Meeting

Saturday January 13, 2018, 10am-1pm

Beach Middle School
445 Mayer Dr, Chelsea, MI 48118
Spinner’s Flock monthly guild meetings are a great way to connect with area spinners, weavers, needlefelters, and shepherds.  There is a learner’s circle for spinners every month with wheels provided by the guild. Guests and new members are always welcome!

Warm Paws thrummed mitten

Thrummed Mittens Class

Wednesdays January 17 & 24, 2018, 11am-1pm — SOLD OUT

Spun
407 N. Fifth Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
I am teaching my popular class on how to knit thrummed mittens using my Warm Paws pattern. Spun is a wonderfully warm and inviting yarn shop located in the Kerrytown district of downtown Ann Arbor.

Shibui Trunk Show and Yarn Tasting

Saturday January 20, 2018, 11am-2pm

The Purple Purl
1162 Queen St. E. Toronto, ON. M4M 1L4
“We are delighted to be carrying a selection of the decadent and delightful Shibui yarns! We will be hosting a yarn tasting event so you can get your hands on this lovely stuff and try it out on the needles to see what you may just NEED to make of it next!”

Winter Wine and Wool at Sandhill Crane Vineyards

Winter Wine and Wool

Saturday January 27, 2018, 10am-5pm

Sandhill Crane Vineyards
4724 Walz Rd, Jackson, MI 49201
What could be a better pairing?  This is an awesome event full of delicious victuals, beautiful fiber products, and welcoming community of vinters, dyers, designers, and customers.

Sauder Village Knitting and Fiber Arts Retreat

Friday February 9 – Sunday February 11, 2018

The Sauder Heritage Inn is a cozy environment for a fiber retreat.  There’s plenty of space, a great breakfast, a hot tub to soak in, and Sauder Village right next door for a ramble through living history of the area. Registration is available for 2 or 3 day attendance.

Spinner’s Flock February Guild Meeting

Saturday February 10, 2018, 10am-1pm

Beach Middle School
445 Mayer Dr, Chelsea, MI 48118
Spinner’s Flock monthly guild meetings are a great way to connect with area spinners, weavers, needlefelters, and shepherds.  There is a learner’s circle for spinners every month with wheels provided by the guild. Guests and new members are always welcome!

Buckeye Alpaca Show

Saturday February 10 – Sunday February 11, 2018

Arena Complex
Summit County Fairgrounds, Tallmadge, OH
The Buckeye Alpaca Show celebrates all that is camelid with a fleece competition, live auctions, and — or course — vendors.

Winter Fleece Fair

Saturday February 17, 2018, 10am-4pm

Beach Middle School
445 Mayer Dr, Chelsea, MI 48118
I’ve been going to this sale for 20 years and it doesn’t get more local than this.  The Fleece Fair is a GREAT place to buy fleece (raw and washed), roving, combed top, fiber tools of all kids, and books from local makers and shepherds. That room full of color and wool in the middle a Michigan winter is a truly a balm for the soul.  The prices are really good too.

Learn to knit with these simple fingerless mitts

Beginning Knitting Class — taught by me!

Thursdays February 22 & March 3, 2018 11am-1pm

Spun
407 N. Fifth Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
I love to teach beginning knitters. There’s nothing like that moment when everything clicks together!  In this class, taught over two sessions, I guide you through the basics of how to knit and we work on making a simple pair of fingerless mitts that incorporates these essentials skills.

Roving Indiana: Yarn Crawl

Friday February 23 – Sunday March 11, 2018

Encompassing 13 yarn shops in 10 cities, the Roving Indiana Yarn Crawl is 17-day celebration of all things woolly!  Check out the website for special events, limited edition yarn for the crawl, project ideas, and a pattern to knit your own passport holder.

Open Knitting at Skeins on Main

Thursdays, starting at 6pm

428 S. Main St, Rochester, MI 48307
“Join us for an evening of laughter, friendship, and maybe even a little knitting or crochet.  There’s no fee to attend.  This is not a class, so no instructor is provided.”

Sit & Knit at The Village Yarn & Fiber Shop

Thursdays, 6:30-9pm

350 W Commercial St, East Rochester, NY 14445
“Come join us on Thursday evenings with your current project to socialize and make some new friends! We’ll have treats and coffee to enjoy while you relax and work on your projects. Knitting, crocheting, spinning – everything to do with yarn and fiber is welcome!”

Got a tip on a fiber event in the Great Lakes region that you’d like to share? Drop me a note using this contact form.