Jobo Designs

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11. January 2011 09:13
by Jobo
2 Comments

Gone Fishing Norwegian-Style Mittens

11. January 2011 09:13 by Jobo | 2 Comments

I almost forgot to photograph Dad's mittens... I was so excited to pass them over to him, that I honestly couldn't even wait until they were completely dry!  I gave them to him still damp.  With some knit items, wet blocking isn't really all that important, but with colorwork, I really find that a good soak smoothes out any uneven stitches, and covers a multitude of sins :)

This pair was designed and knit especially for my Dad as a special Christmas gift.  He so rarely asks me to make anything for him, that I couldn't help myself - I took some ideas and just ran with them, and I must admit, the results are pretty satisfying.  I think he's pleased with them too ;)

Here they are in all of their glory! 

pair dad's fishy mittens

Backs:

pair dad's fishy mittens front

Palms:

pair dad's fishy mittens back

To recap... here are some of the specs:

- Dad likes to "play" outside, and finds that his hands get too cold with plain gloves on, but he can't feel to do anything with mittens on.  These "trigger" mittens, or "picking" mittens as we used to call them when I was a kid (seriously, in our house - nose / toilet humour always found a healthy place) give the right balance of warmth and practicality.  Plus - they are basically two layers of 100% wool... the knit layer and the woven floats on the inside.  Doubly wooly warm.

- My dad has been a sport fisherman for as long as I can remember.  I showed him some mitts with moose, and birds and other creatures on them, and of course he asked if there could be fish instead.  I didn't have much luck finding a rainbow or a speckled trout pattern, but this little fishie turned out ok I think.  The palm side of the mitts features a common traditional all over pattern, which conveniently enough looks a bit like fish scales.

- My parents also have 2 small Dogs - Molly and Sophie - so I included a small mutt on each of the wrists.

- As for the rest of the mittens, I kind of made things up as I went.  I chose some basic geometric patterns, and decided the cuff needed a latvian braid for good measure.  I took measurements of Dad's hands and just knit until the mittens felt right.  Dad likes his mittens to come up nice and high on the wrist... to avoid drafty sleeves.

dad's fishy mitts on dad's fishy mitts on back

And here they are on the hands they were made for... Thanks for letting me take your picture Dad!  I hope he gets lots of use out of them... Mom says he has them in the car to wear out-and-about for now, but I hope he really puts them to the test.  That's how I know he really likes something... he will wear them completely out!

17. December 2010 05:25
by Jobo
2 Comments

Norwegian Mittens for Dad... finally rounding the bend

17. December 2010 05:25 by Jobo | 2 Comments

back of dad's mitts fish

You might remember... way back when... I had started making some Norwegian mittens for my Dad, but I got stuck.  I was using KnitPicks Pallete yarn, which is a little thinner than I have ever used for stranded knitting.  I know other people love the stuff, but I couldn't seem to get my gauge just right, and ended up frustrating myself.  I really liked the way the knitting worked out, and the way the patterns were showing, but my gauge was wonky, and I was knitting more stitches in a round than I ever have for mittens.  Needless to say, these hibernated for quite a while...

Then Christmas was coming.  fast.  darnnit.

So I decided I should rework my pattern, get some bigger yarn, like I am used to using, and just get the darn things finished.  It's the only thing that Dad has asked me to make him, like ever, and I don't want to let him down.

I went out and got some Paton's Classic Wool... which is a light worsted, but knits up great stranded on about a 3.5 - 3.75 mm needle.  It's kind of like my old faithful when it comes to yarn.  It's wool, it's dependable, and it seems to always work out for me.

I borrowed the fish motif from the Fisherman's Friend Mittens by Jorid Linvik, and the dog motif from Traditional Scandinavian Knitting by Sheila MacGregor... and rearranged them and tweaked them to make a pair of man sized, "trigger" mittens.  (i.e. where the pointer finger has it's own glove like finger and the rest of the fingers share a spot)

I am more pleased now with the way things are going together.  I think dad will love them too!

 

dad's mittens dog

I'm hoping to get the pair completed soon... I only have the thumbs and the tops of the main finger area left to do... and then to tie in the ends of course, and block them.  I currently don't have any man sized mitten blockers, and certainly not any to fit trigger mittens.  I guess I'll have to do the cardboard cutout thing again and cover them with plastic wrap.  Someday I'd like to buy more blockers, but that would mean making up my mind about what sizes and materials I should get.  sigh.  No more major decisions until after the holidays, k?  tks.

16. December 2010 08:15
by Jobo
4 Comments

Salad? What Salad... these mittens are AWESOME!

16. December 2010 08:15 by Jobo | 4 Comments

I don't know what these mittens should be named in the end, but they definitely turned out great! 

pair with beads

The pattern is my own design... featuring a horseshoe cable running asymmetrically over the ring finger of each hand, and some great shiny glass beads.  The yarn is my own bulky handspun 2-ply... in all it's barberpole-y wonder!

sewing on beads

I didn't have thread to match the yarn, so I even spun a few yards of extra fine lace yarn with the leftovers, so I could sew on the beads and have everything blend in and match correctly.  I love the way the glass beads shine and bring out the colors of the yarn.  I decided to play up the asymmetrical-ness and only add the beads along one side of the cable.

electric mitten cable with beads

Also, I really like the way the thumbs turned out... using a little different method of increasing stitches for the gussett... I ended up with a unique forking pattern, almost like the veins running out from the centre of a leaf.  I also adorned these with beads :)  (can you have too many?  I'm not so sure...  I think it's like marshmallows or chocolates... you have to keep going!)

thumbs 

I had originally planned on doing a lining with this pair, but I loved the way that the extra fat yarn worked into a soft, squishy, thick wool layer.  I bet these will felt nicely inside, and the wearer won't have any problems with chilly fingers.  I also love the gentle stripes and smatterings of color spread throughout the green shades.  I don't think I'll ever get tired of knitting with my own hand dyed, handspun yarns.

electric mitten and beads

I plan on knitting these through one more time, perhaps with a more commercially available chunky/bulky yarn, and finalizing my pattern... then I will be looking for a couple of test knitters to run through and give me some feedback... then hopefully will be able to release the pattern on Ravelry without too much delay.  The idea of other people knitting my designs is exciting, but also terrifying at the same time.  I've always been the sort of knitter to make things up as I go, but I have not had much practice trying to write out the creatures of my imagination so that others could try to make them too.  I have a feeling this will be an adventure :)

more art mitten

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