Saturday, January 23, 2010

2 days = 2 mitts = HAPPY warm hands

Wow. Two weeks into the new semester already. Time is a'wasting, and I really need to get caught up on my Christmas knitting before the end of January. OK. Just two more projects to go...

Right before the end of the break, while I still had a little bit of time left to sit and knit, I decided to make a pair of fuzzy fingerless gloves. There is a bit of a draft from the window in my office, which can make it terribly chilly at times during the winter months, and I wanted something that would keep my hands warm and yet still allow me to type and turn pages easily...

I chose a delightfully simple and satisfying pattern: Susie's Reading Mitts, by Susie Rogers and Janelle Masters and available as a free download from Dancing Ewe Yarns. Based on the name and the photography in the pattern leaflet (which includes some lovely hardcover books and a warm cup of some soothing beverage), I could not help imagining that these mitts might have originally been meant for a humanities graduate student, to help ward off the chill of sitting and reading in ill-heated spaces for hours on end. Perfect for the professor!!

For my rendition, I dug out some 20-year-old jet black mohair from my stash. The label is long-gone, but it may well have been Pingouin brand, because I remember buying some in various colors back in the 1980's. I used 3.75 mm (US size 5) double-pointed needles (a great way to practice my dpn skills), and embellished the edges at top, bottom, and thumb with some shiny 6/0 silver-lined crystal beads from Earthfaire. I knew from my beloved Queen of the Night cowl (which these mitts were meant to compliment, since I wear it so often) just how magically the silver beads would glisten and twinkle like stars or snowflakes against the inky background. As always, click on this photo or any of the others to get a closer look.

However, the best part of this story is that I was able to finish each glove in ONE SITTING, so that after just two days I had the pair complete. It was an amazing feeling. I have *very* small hands, so the fit is not quite as snug as I might ideally have wished. I suppose, if I had it all to do again, that I would probably use needles one size smaller, but I am still very pleased with the end results. I have already worn them quite a lot.

Here are two pictures, one of the WIP and one of the finished pair. Sometime soon I will get my husband to take another one of what they look like when worn. Experienced knitters develop their manual dexterity to an amazing degree, but even I cannot manage the contortions necessary to photograph gloves I am wearing!!

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