Monday, January 31, 2011

More Mittens!

Hugh needed new mittens, and said he wanted "bright blue". Well, I didn't have anything bright enough for him, that wasn't 100% acrylic. I opted for some Sean's Sheep "Armytage", a Wal-Mart wool. This colourway has blue, green, and a pale blue in it. Unfortunately, I was past the thumb on the first one and hadn't yet come to the pale blue. I didn't want to suddenly change colours, so I decided to do a 1x1 pattern. This also meant the mitts would be warmer due to the floats on the inside. Although I tried to keep it even, I can see that the patterned section narrows in a bit. He says the thumbs are too tight. It's really hard to measure a child that has the patience of a gnat for being measured. But, even if he doesn't wear them daily, they're still good for back up and maybe for another child. Just after I started them, someone on the Yahoo Machine Knitting group mentioned a mitten pattern that starts at one tip, does the mitten backwards, which becomes the inside mitten, then a long ribbed section, then another mitt for the outside layer. The benefit...I could use thinner yarn and my standard gauge with ribber. Two layers of sock yarn would be like mitts in DK, two layers of DK would be like mitts in worsted, and if I did Fair Isle with floats, that's another layer. Plus, I could use punchcards and get fancy! I had just bought four balls of old Kroy 3 ply from the Salvation Army, for $1 a ball. The doubled mitts took just over one ball!
There were some things I didn't like about these mitts. They have an 'afterthought' thumb, coming out of the palm, which makes the mitts left/right specific. That's okay if there's a pattern on the back of the hand, but when you just grab them out of the box, it's hard to see. I didn't like how the tip of the inside mitt was done using the EON cast didn't pull tight for me. These ended up with a slightly too loose tension, and he says they're not too warm :( And, they're too small. I think this boy's hands are growing in his sleep. Looking at them today, I think they have actually shrunk a little....especially the thumbs. I don't notice this with my Kroy socks.
Since these ones, I have knit 3 other pairs, each one doing something different, of course. Stay tuned!

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