Convertible Mittens

I had scarcely gotten the college kid’s sweater off the needles when he put in another request: “Mom, when you have time, will you please knit me a pair of mittens?”

I’m about always overjoyed when get specific requests for knitting.  I don’t have to worry about whether the requestor will appreciate knitting.  Nor do I have to worry that I’m investing time knitting, say, a hat, when the recipient perhaps hates hats.  So, I tend to prioritize requests.

It just so happened that I had three skeins of Brooklyn Tweed’s Shelter (colorway: Soot) left over from his sweater.  More than enough for some mittens.  I also had room in my project rotation for a purse project, and mittens would work out great.  Onto the needles they went.

I decided on Juris Mitts, but without the individual fingers.  I hate knitting fingers in gloves with a purple passion, so I’d knit the hand portion as a fingerless mitt.

mitts on

back view mitt

Over that, I knit the mitten tops:

mittens on

mittens on palm

Next?  Well, now he’s asking for socks.  But he’ll have to wait.  I liked these convertible mittens so much that I put some on the needles for me.

 

 

 

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The Twizzle Weigh-it Shawl is Finished

I finished my Twizzle Shawl and blocked it last weekend. I finally have time to write about it while my beef stock is simmering on this snowy Saturday. (If you’d like to see my earlier post about the shawl, it’s here.)

Pattern: Susan B. Anderson’s Yowza Weigh-it Shawl.  Yarn: Mountain Colors Twizzle in Thunderstorm (although my skeins were marked Thunderhead).

Yowza bed

Yowza on

Yowza back

I am thrilled with this shawl. The Merino-silk blend is soft, warm, and squishy. The drape is fabulous. The colors go with about everything in my wardrobe. The curly ends tie nicely:

Yowza curlicue

And they also hang in an appealing ruffledy cascade:

Yowza hanging

Speaking of ruffles, the subtle ruffled edge adds just enough flounce without being overbearing:

Yowza ruffle closeup

I’m sure this is going to be a wardrobe staple. So, what’s next? Well, when this came off the blocking boards, I threw it on and went straight to my LYS for more Twizzle.

MT Bluebird

That colorway is Bluebird. I bought a skein of Crazyfoot in the same colorway so that I could knit up some matching mittens. I’ll plan to cast on Yowza 2 with the Twizzle the next time I need a stupid-easy social knitting project. Could be next holiday season, could be next week. I’m ready either way.

 

 

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The Shawl Joins a Knitalong

This week, I joined Susan B. Anderson’s Shawl Knitalong, my first-ever KAL. It’s not that I haven’t wanted to do a KAL — it’s just that the circumstances have never been right. For others I’ve come across, I’ve been on knitting deadlines that I knew would keep me from truly participating or finishing on time, or work demands have intervened, or I didn’t care for the pattern or perhaps the yarn, or they were tied to TV shows I don’t watch. But this one? This one was perfect.

You see, I’ve already got a running start on my shawl.

Twizzle Weigh It started[

 

I cast on the Yowza Weigh-it Shawl as a stupid-easy project to knit on during the holidays. It’s been a screaming success, too. I decided to use some Mountain Colors Twizzle, a delightful worsted-weight yarn in a soft, squishy merino-silk blend. I’ve used it before to make a cowl, hat, and mittens, and have found it to be soft, warm, and that it wears surprisingly well. This colorway, called Thunderhead, doesn’t really remind me of stormy skies. Rather, the colors are more like what I see at twilight in winter. Calming to knit and eminently wearable with the colors already in my wardrobe.

I cast it on just before the out-of-towners arrived at Thanksgiving. I knit while prepping for Thanksgiving dinner. I knit while watching football games. I knit when we took the in-laws up to Rocky Mountain National Park. All the while, the simple garter stitch flowed as the conversations did, never keeping me too preoccupied to keep up with what was going on around me.

With the in-laws scooted back East after Thanksgiving, I set my sights on Christmas. I knit during those crazy weeks, grateful to have a simple project to pick up and put down. I knit when we had a houseful of people at Christmas, again finding it to be well-suited to being social while also being productive. I knitted my way almost to 200 grams, or two skeins of yarn.

Yowza 2-3 (1)

And then? Well, Christmas was over, and family started to head back from whence they came. On a post-Christmas outing with remaining family, I popped into my LYS (gee, funny how that happens. . . ) and picked up this:

Malabrigo Playa

It’s Malabrigo sock yarn in Playa. I bought it to add to the sock yarn stash, not having any particular project in mind. That is, until I got home, began filling out my January calendar, and realized that I needed a gift for a favorite aunt by the end of January. I set a land-speed record for LYS-to-cast-on, and put that yarn on the needles right away.

This week, just as I was ready to graft the toes and get these socks off the needles,

sock blockers portrait

Susan announced her KAL.

I couldn’t believe my good fortune. I could pick up some additional patterns at a discount, plus find the motivation to fish out my shawl from next to my knitting basket, where it had languished for the past month.

Yowza closeup (1)

The deadline for finishing — March 1 — was completely do-able, particularly given the progress I’d already made. I could throw the shawl back into my usual knitting rotation. I wouldn’t even have to devote myself to it completely — there’d be room for other projects, too. And after a month of focusing on one project only, having some variety in my knitting life was something I could really look forward to. This week, I’ll plan to attach that final skein so I can begin the ruffle. Just in time for Super Bowl knitting.

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