Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Book Review: Knit Mittens!

Knit Mittens! by Robin Hansen

I don't particularly like how the patterns are written--rather like a chart of directions which I don't find especially easy to follow. Despite that, I like the patterns themselves and plan on making several of them. They're fairly easy and are all knit from wool which I also like and the colors chosen are vibrant which is appealing. I would recommend this book and, if you like charted directions, this book would be perfect!

February's Plain Vanilla Mittens

My color for February is red. I'd thought of using pink, but I decided to save it for a month in spring. There is so little light at this time of year and the skies are so dreary, I really yearn for bright, cheerful colors. Soon the crocuses will come peeking up out of the ground, then the tulips and daffodils. I'm looking forward to that!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Hugh's Sheepie Mittens

Do you see that little boy second from the left? That's Hugh. He's with his brothers Owen, Jack, and Gavin. And do you see what's on Hugh's hands? Socks! Yes, this poor little guy is wearing socks, not mittens or gloves! Oh, the shame!

They're all grown now, but a few years after this photo was taken, to make it up to him, I knit him these sheepie mittens. The pattern can be found in Homespun, Handknit: Caps,Socks,Mittens & Gloves, edited by Linda Ligon. I love how the thumb and little finger make the ears, don't you?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

January's Plain Vanilla Mittens

I told you I had a plan, right? Here it is. My plan is to knit two pairs of mittens a month as I described previously.

Here's the first plain vanilla mittens.

I'm going to photograph each month's plain version on a quilt to make them more interesting. Really, though, these mittens are boring. After knitting the second mitten I've already memorized the pattern.

Again, the pattern used for the plain mittens is this one and I'm using Lamb's Pride Worsted Weight and size 4 double pointed needles. The size is medium.

You will notice the cuff is long and I've done that on purpose as these are mittens knit to be donated and longer cuffs helps keep the warmth in.

In EZ's Knitter's Almanac, she writes:

It is better not to make mittens in a hurry. When snow flies and small frozen hands beg for warmth (sob), the actual knitting tends to be perfunctory and possibly scrimpted; one economies on the number of stitches; one does not make the cuffs sufficiently long. The main object then is to turn out scads of mittens to appease the demand, and the enjoyment of production is not what it might be. (page 53)

As this pair of mittens is for charity, I've also posted the photo and information on another of my blogs, Knitting for Peace.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Year of the Mitten!

I've declared 2012 the Year of the Mitten, but alas, I am, as usual, late. I Googled "Year of the Mitten" and it seems like that was last year or the year before or even a few years before that for many bloggers. So I'm behind. *sigh* What else is new.

I've been gathering together books, websites, patterns, yarns, and needles and I've included some resources on the blog sidebar. And I have a plan. I always have a plan.

I hope to knit one or two pairs of mittens a month. One pair of mittens will be a plain vanilla using this pattern. These will be donated. These mittens will be made using Lamb's Pride Worsted Weight and size 4 double pointed needles. The second pair will be my fancy mittens. These may be lace or colorwork or made of a luxurious fiber like silk, qiviut, or cashmere. Or perhaps another pair of plain vanilla mittens, but with a stitch pattern or a little colorwork. Perhaps a baby pair made of leftover sock yarn.

Now you may be wondering why I'm knitting mittens when I live in the Pacific Northwest. It's true that I don't live in Bandon, the banana belt of Oregon, but I don't live in the mountains either. I live in the Willamette Valley, where winter weather is usually mild and snow is possible, but it isn't all that common. Where it's windy and it rains. And rains. And rains. And seldom does that rain turn to ice or snow. But then, you never know. It's always good to be prepared.
My backyard, 2007.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Grand Opening --January 2012!

I am readying this blog to begin in early January, 2012. Come back to see what I'm doing. Thanks!