Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

16. November 2009 06:48
by Jobo

Itchy Itchy, Scratchy Scratchy

16. November 2009 06:48 by Jobo | 5 Comments

=  a little disappointed :(

I worked through my ?Bella Mittens? and the pattern itself is well written and the mittens turned out as they should have (though a teensy bit too small, but a vicious blocking might fix that?) except that the yarn is REALLY Itchy!  I?m not sure if it is just me, or if other people will find it acceptable.  In the ball the yarn felt really silky and smooth, but after being knit, it feels like little bits of fiber are poking into my skin.  I could hardly wear them long enough to take the pictures.  I was going to gift these for Christmas, but I think I will just give them away somewhere, they are a little small anyways, and somebody?s kid would probably think they are just the cat?s meow. 

I do think I will try this pattern again with another yarn perhaps.  I am thinking of dyeing some wool to make a nice thick chunky yarn, maybe a bright barberpole?  They wouldn?t really be ?Bella?-ish anymore, but maybe more wearable for me?  Hmmmmm Back to the design board?

lavender pewter mittens

Bella?s Mittens? Pattern good ? - - Yarn (Bernat Alpaca Natural Blends) Itchy.

9. November 2009 07:59
by Jobo

Fiddlehead Mittens? becoming ship shaped? erm Mitten Shaped?

9. November 2009 07:59 by Jobo | 6 Comments

Over the weekend, I finally had a chance to tidy up the rest of the Fiddlehead Mitten yarn.  I had finished the green singles last week, and had been letting them rest for a bit so that they would be easier to Navajo ply.  I had also completed a bobbin of creamy natural white, also needing to be plied.  I also needed to set the twist on the finished skeins.  Since there really wasn?t that much left to be done before the cast on, I just went for it and got started.  Funny how the promise of casting on a new project can get a knitter so excited?  I plied like there was no tomorrow?

progress yarn drying icordcaston

It was a chilly but sunny day, so I did my washing of the finished skeins (I suppose washing is a misnomer, I mostly just rinsed in hot water with a few drops of Apple Scented Dawn, probably not enough soap to be considered a washing?)  With the light breeze, the skeins were dry in no time.  I think I really achieved the feel I wanted with the woolen-spun yarns.  The skeins were light and bouncy, and very soft.

I took them over to my Mother?s place on Saturday morning and she helped me wind the skeins into balls, and I was off to the races with the knit up :)

The idea of an ?i-cord cast on? was completely new to me.  I will admit, the last time I made an i-cord was probably when I was 10, using one of those little red tube contraptions with the 4 pegs and a little tool to flip the loops over? So really I had kind of forgotten that it was a knitting technique to begin with. Adrian?s instructions were nice and clear :)  Do not fear the i-cord cast on? give it a try!  I will certainly be trying to come up with new ways to use this cast on in the future ? it makes a nice neat cast on edge that doesn?t roll up or look sloppy.  I thin it will keep the bottom of the mittens from looking stretched out too after being worn for a while


I am finding the pattern very straightforward to follow, and clearly written so far.  I was afraid that knitting these would take me way to long and that they would get in the way of my necessary holiday knitting.  Not so, thankfully!  I knit the entire first mitten (minus thumb) on Saturday, and finished the cast on for mitten number two before I went to bed.  Sunday I knit the majority of the second mitten while watching movies with the Husbeast (who was also amazed at the speed of progress)


During the spinning progress, I had been concerned that perhaps the slight uneven-ness in my spinning might show up as uneven points in the knitting, but I am quite happy with my results.  Overall, the cream yarn and the colors meshed together quite nicely, and the gauge throughout the mitten seems fairly consistent.  (It?s a little hard to tell from the pic above, the way the photo was taken, things are a little skewed? some of my photos turned out a little too blurry to use unfortunately, I?ll have to be more careful with the finished mitts pics)  The dyeing job also worked out as planned ? a Rainbow of slightly heathered yarns in a progression of colors.

Hopefully this evening I can finish the top of Mitt #2 (before I forget exactly what I did with the first one) and maybe spend some time spinning up the rest of the lining (I think I have enough done for one lining, but not the second complete one. 

Yay! This project is turning out as planned :)

6. November 2009 05:00
by Jobo

Cabled Mittens: falling onto the Bandwagon after all

6. November 2009 05:00 by Jobo | 1 Comments

Every so often a pattern comes along that is:  in style, interesting, popular, trendy…  so basically everyone jumps on the bandwagon and makes one of whatever it is.

Examples of this would be projects like the infamous “Baby Surprise Jacket”, “Monkey” Socks, “Fetching” fingerless mitts, etc.  Sometimes I join in and try out these popular items too… I mean seriously, if there have been nearly 10,000 pairs of something made (aka Monkeys) then the pattern must at least be well written and pleasing when finished.

Now don’t get me wrong… I don’t have a problem with the popularity of some knit items – to the contrary.  When you see that such a large number of knitters have tried making the same project, you can be sure there is something interesting about it.  The interest factor may be it’s utter simplicity, or ingenius construction, or just plain practicality.  When enough knitters have made the same project, there are often tons of different variations to browse on Ravelry for inspiration.  I think I’ve seen every colour of yarn under the sun made into Fetching fingerless mitts… and just about every fiber too.  I’ve seen various modifications and improvements to already tried and tested patterns (i.e. No Purl Monkeys).  And most of all I’ve been inspired by all of the creative people out there.  I know it sounds a little boring to browse hundreds of photos of items made from the same basic pattern but each project is as unique as the knitter/creator.

When looking for projects suitable for Holiday gift giving this year I couldn’t help but notice all of the Knock-off “Bella” Twilight Mittens people have made over the last year.  I did enjoy the movie Twilight, and I do remember seeing the heroine’s mittens and being a bit curious (what cable ISSSS that?)  After seeing about 50 pairs, I decided to search for some yarns that I have at home in the stash et voila!  Other knitters have made this pattern using yarns I already have at home.  Mittens make a great gift because they don’t take very long to knit, the majority of my friends and relatives live in Canada (there will be snow) and they only take a small amount of supplies and therefore are a very affordable gift also.

So I cast on a pair and haven’t looked back :) 

The view from the Band-Wagon is good folks, and there is soft cuddy yarn up here too… need a hand to climb on up?

pewter yarn

The Yarn:  Bernat Alpaca Natural Blends in Lavender/Pewter

Pattern: Bella's Mittens by Marielle Henault (available as a free download on Ravelry)

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