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Mittens for the Tuesday on the Wednesday

Completed on 02 May 2007 for Christmas!


My Italian grandmother used to knit us mittens for Christmas. It was something we looked forward to. I loved those mittens! I wonder where they are now.

(Funny enough, later in life, when I asked her why she stopped knitting us mittens, she replied, "Because everyone started asking for gloves." She had a good sense of humor.)

Now my brother, Chris, had this great idea of me continuing the tradition, by knitting mittens for my five nieces and nephews. Great idea, in theory, but I know in practice that these kids surely have, like, hi-tech Gore-tex gloves and will not want my handmade items. And as some of you know, I haven't had much luck knitting for family members.

Nonetheless, I have committed to this experiment. I will make five pairs of kids' mittens for Christmas 2007. Which means that I have to start right now. This first pair is for the Tuesday, my niece, who recently visited me in London and who I therefore could measure first-hand. After this, I'll design for Zander, Olivia, Harrison, and Sam.

Because I am in love with Jamieson & Smith 2-ply jumper weight (since it's the best thing, I believe, for true Fair Isle), I have justified ordering more new yarn colors, to enable me to execute said Christmas mitten order (and not, of course, to placate any personal desire to acquire more yarn, of course, ha ha).

I am utilizing only six colors, my favorite color being the green-green-green #FC11 which Jamieson & Smith are----horrors!----discontinuing. I am so sad about this. But, the discontinuation means that I can totally justify ordering the last 800 grams they have in stock!

These mittens are knit on the short five-inch DPNs, which I found really helpful for kids' mittens. And, I only did the Fair Isle on the top side, with the palm side getting only the one-one alternating colors. Not because I'm lazy (ha ha) but because the one-one business makes for a stronger knit fabric, especially in the palm area, which will surely take a beating when the kids play tug-o'-war with a really rough rope, wearing the nice handknit mittens. (Oh gosh, that image just sent a shiver down my spine.)

I did the thumb just like I now do a sock heel. It's so fun. Granted, it's only a matter of time before I start insisting on a thumb gusset. But that's for later. For kids in kindergarten, I think these peasant thumbs are just fine.

Here are the finished mittens, top side up. I washed them vigorously in hot soapy water, then dried flat.

Here's the palm side, with great simple green thumbs. I specifically made the cabled cuffs quite long, for better coverage during snowy days in Colorado.

This pair is for the Tuesday, my niece. One pair down, four more to go!

Knitting specs:

Mitts were knit with Jamieson & Smith brand yarn, 100% Shetland wool, 2-ply jumper weight. Knit on five-inch Brittany birch DPNs purchased from Patternworks, size 2.50mm.

That's the Tuesday, trying on her new mittens, on Christmas Day 2007.

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