Anyway, Autumn is pretty much passing me by. The local weather is not 'Autumnal' yet and, what with me and my daughter getting ill, we didn't even carve a pumpkin for Hallowe'en this year. I grew up with harvest festivals (where schools and churches get decorated up and collect food to give to the needy) rather than Thanksgiving (nice meal, but could really do with some roast spuds and Yorkshire puds, if you ask me). Christmas, on the other hand, gets me all nostalgic. AND I've already started sorting out some presents for Christmas (I know, I know, you're wondering who I am and what happened to the procrastinator that usually posts on this blog...).
One wee present that I've made is these ever-so-simple mitts. I was going to try the toast / toasty pattern, but didn't have the correct sized needles and couldn't get my husband off the PC so that I could check out what type of yarn was used etc. So I decided to make something up as I went along instead. Nothing ground-breaking, but I thought that I would share it, as it would be a great project for a beginner that hasn't knit in the round before. The ribbing would hide any join line and the thumb hole is simply made by switching to rows. The stretchy ribbing improves the chances of a good fit. Plus they do not take much yarn and can be knitted up quickly, even by slow-pokes like me. And I like the way that they look more like the ends of a layered jumper (sweater) poking out from your cardy sleeve than mitts.
Last-minute knit mitt version 1:
Yarn: less than a ball of Bernat Soft Bouclé
Needles: four US size 5 double pointed needles (3.75mm)
Cast on 30 stitches (I cast on using the long tail cast on method as I have some vague memory of reading that this is a stretchy cast-on stitch. My memory might not be reliable. Feel free to correct me).
Divide the stitches onto 3 double-pointed needles, so that there are 10 stitches on each needle.
Join, taking care not to twist the stitches. Mark the beginning of the round (ok, I never do this - I just look for where the tail of yarn dangles from the cast on edge and judge it from that).
Work in a knit 1 purl 1 rib (*knit 1, purl 1, repeat from *) for 5-8 inches, depending on what length that you want the mitts to be (measure your arm from 1" below the thumb joint to the desired length). Then, when you reach the end of that round, STOP - do not join. You should have ended on a purl stitch
Thumb hole (stop working in the round, and work back and forth in rows for 10 rows):
Row 1: Turn the knitting around (facing the inside of the mitt), and start with a knit stitch (in that previous purl stitch), then purl 1, then continue in the knit 1, purl 1 rib pattern to the end of the row, turn.
Row 2-9: Starting each row with a knit stitch to maintain the rib pattern, knit 1, purl 1 rib to the end of the row and turn
Row 10: knit 1, purl 1 rib to the end of the row, then join.
Top of mitt:
Knit 10 more rounds in the knit 1, purl 1 rib.
Cast off (I used the sewn cast-off method - again, vague memories about stretchiness).
Done. Make another one. Ta da.
I wish I had thought to use the self-timer when photographing previous mitts.Here's some green paper inside the mitt to show the thumb hole better. It's that hole being pointed to by my scruffy-nailed finger.
Last-minute knit mitt version 2 - the green mitt:
Yarn: less than a ball of Red Heart Plush (bought way back when during a closing down sale and I have never seen another ball of this yarn since...)
Needles: four US size 5 double pointed needles (3.75mm).
I made this version a fraction looser. Cast on 36 stitches, divide onto 3 needles, 12 stitches to a needle. Join and knit in a wider rib of *knit 2, purl 2, repeat from *. Continue knitting in the knit 2 purl 2 rib, following the pattern for version 1 mitts. ie. knit up to the thumb hole, then knit back and forth in rows, keeping the knit 2 purl 2 rib, for 10 rows, then knitting 10 more rows in the round.
Translation of the Day:
UK English: cardy / cardie (abbr.) = cardigan in US English.
I shouldn't get me started on the different clothing terms again...
PS. Don't worry - I am still a procrastinator. I haven't even taken a photo of my kids in their Halloween costumes yet...
PPS. I apologise in advance for all grouchy comments concerning the local weather. I get disappointed all over again every year about California's lack of seasons. Maybe I'll accept it as a given one day and stop singing "I'm dreaming of a white Christmas" all December long...