I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Mittens Required

Hello! We had icy snow here yesterday at the beach. Gone are the warm sunny Decembers of past years. It's very cold. I had to wear my snow pants today. And I
never did get all the ice off my poor shivering Jeep.

I had to restock my pantry and fridge, start planning for Christmas meals. Saturday will be Tree Day and I plan to have my Very Veggie chili  made for dinner afterward, to renew everyone's strength for the big final shopping week.

It gets dark so early! Even with our long nautical twilight it is pretty darn dark here by 5.30 or 6PM. The fun thing is that coming home from errands all the neighborhoods are just amazingly bursting, glittering, with extravagant outdoor Christmas lights. Don't you wonder who invented house lighting for Christmas? I think my dad remembered his father decorating their home back in Ohio, many years ago.

Anyway, back to the cold weather: definitely need hats and mittens. I've been knitting fingerless mitts. These are so fast and fun and very useful. Lately I have just been knitting [and quilting] mainly for myself; I'm slow and no one else much wants ''granny-look'' things, I guess.

I usually have to take my gloves off to drive, to take photos, make calls or send texts. Not with these cuties! Had to have pompoms, even if I'm no longer 4 years old.

The yarn is from last year's NYC farmers Market  (Union Square Greenmarket). The 100% wool, handspun yarn was wonderful to work with. 

This is my second pair, only one mitten is finished.

Unblocked. I used odds and ends of yarns for the very bright color blocking effect.

Inspiration photo, Pinterest, below.

I even got a request to make a pair for one of my kids. I was pretty thrilled, since, as I've mentioned, they are not so fond of my crafty endeavors. Good thing I had the foresight to have the recipient choose their yarn. "Soot" would not have been my first [or last] choice. Brooklyn Tweed The pale grey is alpaca, in case the person allows pompoms. No? sigh......


I'll put the basic pattern at the end here. I changed it a lot but you can use the original if your gauge works. (I always knit too big.) I apologize to the original designer, I lost the link where I found this ever so simple and fun pattern.
 Stay warm! Be cozy!
................gone to the beach....


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                              Basic Open Mittens

 Materials:: Worsted weight yarn. US 6 double pointed (I used 5s)
needles, set of 4 (or size to obtain gauge); stitch markers

Gauge: 5.5 st = 1"
Cuff:: Cast on 40 stitches. Divide onto three needles, placing 12 stitches on needle 1; 14 stitches on needle 2; 14 stitches on needle 3.

Join for working in the round. Round 1: *k2, p2; rep from * to end. Repeat rib for 1-2 inches. (That depends on you. And what you want.)
Hand:: Change to knit stitch, and knit until desired length until thumb. For this particular pair, that was 4 inches. Piece measured 5 1/2 inches.

 Next row 1, (needle 1) K2, increase 1 stitch in next stitch, place marker, knit across the rest of the stitches on needle 1, knit across all of the stitches on needle 2, knit to last 3 stitches on needle 3, place marker, increase 1 stitch in next stitch, k2. (42 stitches)
Next row 2, knit one row.
Repeat these 2 rows 4x. (always do increase right before or right after the marker, the directions are a bit vague here)
Then repeat row 1. You will have 52 stitches. And 9 stitches at beginning of needle 1, before marker, and 9 stitches at end of needle 3, after marker.

Next row, knit across all stitches on needle 1 (slipping marker as you come to it), knit across all stitches on needle 2, knit to marker on needle 3, remove marker, k1, bind off next 8 stitches.
Next row, bind off 8 stitches on needle 1, k1, remove marker, k1, *p2, k2; repeat from * to end. (36 stitches)
Next row, join, continuing in rib pattern for 1".

Bind off loosely in rib. Make second mitt in same way.
Weave in ends. I also tighten the area where you joined for top ribbing.