Mitten for the New Year

For my first project of 2009, I’m picking up something that I left half done in 2008; my Druid Mittens.

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I “finished” (except for the thumb) one mitten in October, but got discouraged and needed some time away from it. I love the pattern, I love the cables, and the yarn, but I chose the wrong needle size. And I even did a swatch! Although a stockingette swatch for something that has NO stockingette in it wasn’t the best idea Vogue ever had.

The fabric was much to tight, but I was too much in denial to actually stop knitting. I kept telling myself that blocking would fix it. Nope! Still tight, and too small for  my hand. But it is small in an interesting way:

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The palm has a different row gauge than the top, so the mitten curls on itself. It can even stand up by itself:
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So yes, definitely too small for  me, and odd enough that I wouldn’t want to give them as gifts. For whatever reason it took me ages to realise this, so a few days ago I cast on for mitten #2, with needles 0.5mm bigger, and we’ll see what that does. I haven’t frogged mitten #1 yet though, because I like petting the cables. :)

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Upstairs Downstairs Knitting

I’ve been knitting away on two projects recently. I’ve found a system that I can only implement here, in my parents’ big house. My newest project (cast on as soon as the Annetrelacs were done) are my Druid mittens, and they are my basement project. The long-neglected $1.50 cardigan is my upstairs project.

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The mittens get worked on when I go down to the basement to watch TV after dinner. The having cable thing is great; I get to watch Iron Chef, and Mythbusters (I would love to work with Jamie and Adam)! On a side note, these Discovery Channel ads doesn’t get old.

The cardigan gets worked on when I curl up in the chair in my bedroom and listen to podcasts, or watch things on  my computer (like…. all of Heroes Season 2).

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The mittens are fairly slow going, what with all the cabling. I’m using 2mm needles, and the fabric is quite tight, but that’s good in mittens because it will keep the wind out.

What I’m finding interesting is that I seem to have a different row gauge on the back of the mitten than I do on the palm. The back of the hand is all cable-y, and the palm is a slip-stitch pattern, and somehow I am much tighter doing the palm pattern. It is actually causing the mitten to want to curve over. Luckily, that’s the shape hands naturally are, so hopefully it won’t affect the finished product too much.

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I took these photos on the ferry. I had to get away from the house for a day or two, so I went to Vancouver and visited some friends. Waiting for the ferry, and being on the ferry gave me lots of knitting and reading time.