Beyond the Glove

4. Sanquhar Gloves as a Living Tradition

Adapting Sanquhar Techniques for Other Garments

Sanquhar patterns, in particular the ‘Duke’ pattern, have been adapted for use in garments other than gloves. Designers have created socks, scarves, cowls, sweaters, and even a coat. Here we show a selection of these adaptations.

Slide 1:

“Nice use of a variegated yarn to give interest to the brown squares. These socks were first published in Cast-On, the magazine of The Knitting Guild Association (“TKGA”).” – Beth Brown-Reinsel

“Almost eight years ago, a photograph of a Sanquhar glove in the ‘Duke’ pattern crossed my desk, and I was immediately smitten with the beautiful stranded work. The fine gauge, the cunning little gussets, the geometrical design… what was there not to love? I found a pattern and began plotting to make a pair. The clean lines and small repeats were perfect for mittens, socks, hats, and just about anything else knit. I love watching the patterns develop on my needles, growing row by row and block by block.  (When one is knitting at 14 stitches to the inch, it is encouraging to see such growth.) I am sure there are many more Sanquhar-inspired projects in my future.” – Carolyn Vance

Slide 2:

“A few years ago, I became utterly transfixed by the intricate simplicity, and/or the simple intricacy of the Sanquhar patterns. The gloves are so beautiful, but knowledge of them is quite niche, and I couldn’t bear the thought that one day, the patterns might disappear forever. I genuinely hope that my scarf will help, in part, to preserve the Sanquhar patterns, showing that even the most delicate and fragile traditions can stand up to, and even benefit from development and innovation.” – Nathan Taylor


Slide 3:

Wendy D. Johnson adapted the Sanquhar patterns into a knitted cowl sampler. There are at least 60 interpretations of this cowl on Ravelry. Perhaps the appeal of this project is that it gives knitters a chance to make these fascinating little patterns without the challenges presented by glove construction. Also, cowls have become a fashion staple over the last few years.


Slide 4:

This coat, designed by Judy Furlong, is created using panels of the ‘Duke’ pattern for the body and the ‘Fleur-de Lys’ motif for the sleeves with one of the classic ribbing patterns for the neck, cuffs, and part of the hem.


Slide 5:

Tom of Holland has knitted Sanquhar gloves and then adapted them to these pencil cases, to be found on his blog.