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Pat's Knitting and Quilting

January 28, 2012
Handspun Magnificent Mittens 4-3

Knitting Anna Zilboorg mittens is such a joy filled experience! For this pair I limited myself to the colors in November's Fat Cat Knits Mixed Blessing club fiber - quite a challenge since these are not my "normal" colors - but I LOVE these mittens! Nothing beats the wonderful gauntlet cuffs for keeping the cold off wrists/arms and warm wooly handspun merino liners were the icing on the cake.

Handspun Magnificent Mittens

Started with beautiful fiber from FatCatKnits - she included one braid of natural mixed BFL and one braid of handpainted mixed BFL (I added an extra of the handpainted which is not pictured here)

Mixed BFL

I opted to divide the handpainted fiber into separate colors and then spun a regular 3 ply worsted weight yarn.

Handspun Mixed BFL

Richard Merino Fleece Hand Combed Merino
Handspun Merino
I then decided to wash, comb and spin some beautiful pure merino fleece from "Richard" the sheep (bought from Karen Storay - also sells on ebay as zkarenartisit) to make soft warm liners. 48 grams of hand combed fiber made 228 yards of 2 ply yarn - absolutely the most "alive" yarn I ever ever made - it feels like it has elastic in it - so stretchy! I made everyone in my family and all my knitting friends feel it because it was so unlike any yarn I've ever experienced.

Mitten Liners

here are the finished liners for the warmest soft hand hugging mittens EVER!

Pattern: Magnificent Mittens 4-3 by Anna Zilboorg
Yarn:FatCatKnits Handspun Mixed BFL (58 grams Natural/ 114 grams handpainted) and handcombed/handspun natural "Richard" Merino (24 grams)
Needles: US #4 for outside mitten and US#5 for liner
Size: 54 stitches around for Medium Adult mittens
I chose to make an extra repeat on the main mitten before the thumb (mitten worked top down) for extra finger wiggle space. Knit lining over 40 stitches.

Handspun Magnificent Mittens

Now on to something other than mittens!

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January 12, 2012
More Mittens

Definitely on a mitten roll!
This pair is unbelievably soft and warm and with that beautiful alpaca fuzz halo and the sheen of silk, the yarn couldn't be any prettier!

Silver Heathered Alpaca Silk Mittens

Silver Heathered Alpaca Silk Fiber

From this beautiful Fat Cat Knits Silver Heathered Alpaca/ Tussah Silk blend...

Silver Heathered Alpaca Silk Yarn

I spun some 2 ply worsted weight yarn - 110 fluffy silky yards each color.

Silver Heathered Alpaca Silk Mittens

Pattern: #19 from Knitting Marvelous Mittens Ethnic Designs from Russia by Charlene Schurch
Yarn: Handspun 70% Silver Heathered Alpaca/ 30% Tussah Silk hand-dyed by Fat Cat Knits - Summer 2010 Mixed Blessing Club fiber. 2 ply worsted weight - 110 yards each colorway.
Needles: 2 mittens on 1 40" circular US 5 needle
Size: 48 stitches around - Adult Medium - Followed chart for child's small but used bigger yarn/needles.
Modifications:
in addition to size mod, also started one row lower than beginning of chart for a more finished starting edge. Reversed the edge stripe coloring to outline the diamonds and changed the cuff pattern to a 2 stitch wide stripe.

Silver Heathered Alpaca Silk Mittens

Not simple taking self portrait of mittens while wearing them!

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January 4, 2012
Handspun Striped Mittens

Off to a good start for the NaKniMitMo KAL (a great place for mitten inspiration this month!) I started these in November, but they've been sitting around without thumbs or tips for almost 2 months. I decided I had to finish this pair and one other partially done pair before starting and new mittens! LOVE them :)

Handspun Striped Mittens

Started with 2 beautiful braids of Fat Cat Knits Handpainted Falkland Wool

Falkland Fiber

Spun each bump into regular 3 ply yarn- each skein is 62 grams (2.1 ounces)/132 yards

Handspun Falkland

and knit these simple striped mittens - Alternating 2 colors and always carrying the same color on top/bottom creates ridges that look like one color has been knit above the other - looks kind of like corduroy. (I kept the orange dominant and stranded a little more tightly than usual which gave these great dimension!)

Handspun Striped Mittens

Pattern: "Striped Mittens" from Favorite Mittens by Robin Hansen
Yarn: 84 grams (2.9 ounces) 3 ply Handspun Fat Cat Knits Falkland Wool in "Early American" (October 2011 Mixed Blessing Fiber Club)
Needles: US 3 for cuff and US4 for remainder of mitten
Size: Medium - cast on 52 stitches using Maine Method

Handspun Striped Mittens

Next pair should be done shortly - I'm several inches past the thumb gusset - then on to some brand new mittens!

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